Salisbury Playhouse will be showing the first ever stage adaptation of William Golding's novel The Spire from 1st to 24th November. We spoke to actress Sarah Moyle, who is starring in the production in a dual role, as Rachel and Lady Alison.
Prior to your casting, had you read The Spire? Or any of Golding’s novels?
I knew Lord of the Flies pretty well but I hadn't read The Spire. I read it as soon as I got offered the job... Not your average light holiday read but I read it whilst I was on holiday in New York.
The book is incredibly detailed in describing the construction of the spire. Is it difficult to portray the sheer scale of the build on the stage?
The audience will of course have to suspend a certain amount of disbelief but I think with clever staging and the set by the incredibly talented Tom Rogers, you will be able to get a sense of the scale of the project.
Have you and the other actors been inspired by your visits to Salisbury Cathedral?
We had a tour of the tower on the first day of rehearsals and I am anxious to go back now we are further along in rehearsals. It really is awe inspiring. I am staying in digs near the Cathedral and every day I pass it on my way to work and without fail I always look up for my day's inspiration.
You play Rachel who is one of the victims of Jocelin’s obsession with the spire. Do you think Rachel is sympathetic to Jocelin? Is he a character that invites empathy from the audience?
In addition to Jocelin several other characters are consumed by obsession. Rachel is obsessed with the need to give birth; Roger is obsessed with his desire for Goody. At first I think Rachel admires the Dean and she confides in him but as time goes on she begins to resent the obsession and the effect it has on her and her husband. I think the audience will be torn between admiration, understanding, sympathy and horror at Jocelin’s obsession.
Can you briefly sum up the experience so far of rehearsing The Spire? Do you think it’s a production that will excite the audience?
What a privilege to get to tell this story in Salisbury and to be able to look out of the window of the rehearsal room and see the spire. It is such an epic story that to tell it is a daunting prospect . We are working hard in rehearsals and the script is evolving every day. I do hope audiences will be excited by what we hope will be an honest, interesting and fulfilling experience.
Sarah Moyle pictured above.
You can book tickets by following the link to Salisbury Playhouse's website