‘The Body of An American’ opens at the Royal & Derngate until 8 March




After a highly successful run at The Gate Theatre (London), The Body Of An American opens tonight at The Royal & Derngate (Northampton) until 8 March.

The award winning play is written by Dan O’Brien and directed by James Dacre in the UK.
The production has received excellent reviews and award nominations since making it’s European premiere, and the audience experience has been described as intimate and powerful, with only 2 actors and close-up staging.


Details from the Royal & Derngate website:

Mogadishu, 1993. Paul Watson is a Canadian photojournalist who is about to take a picture that will win him the Pulitzer Prize.

Princeton, 2013, Dan O’Brien is an American writer who is struggling to finish his play about ghosts. Both men live worlds apart but a chance encounter over the airwaves sparks an extraordinary friendship that sees them journey from one of the most dangerous places on earth to the depths of the human soul.

Flying from Kabul to the Canadian High Arctic, The Body Of An American is an exhilarating new form of documentary drama that splices the dialogue with actual recordings and photographs by Paul Watson. Performed in an intimate studio space created in our Underground, this production places these two men’s battles – both public and private – against a backdrop of some of the world’s most iconic images of war.


Damien plays Dan O’Brien and William Gaminara plays Paul Watson, but both actors have over 25 roles, using a mulititude of different accents, switching and sometimes swapping roles in a fast paced dialogue. Their performances have been highly commended:

“Damien Molony is Dan, a man struggling to finish his play and face his own demons. The acting is knockout, it has the muscular quality of a contest and yet it is scrupulously generous, too.” The Guardian

“The challenging text is impressively wrangled by William Gaminara and Damien Molony, who flit between dozens of incidental characters as well as sudden impersonations of one another’s characters with superb clarity.” Exuent magazine

“actors William Gaminara and Damien Molony (both superb) share between them around 80 parts – switching roles even in mid-sentence. They present not just myriad characters from countries as diverse Somalia, Afganistan and Northern Canada; but the difficult and fractured personalities of both the writer and photographer, who by their own reckoning are each to at least some degree, “crazy misfits”.” Whats On Stage

“Molony and Gaminara are both excellent, doing justice to a complex and powerful script.” The Upcoming

“Two actors, William Gaminara and Damien Molony, play roughly 30 characters. Gaminara is gut-wrenchingly believable as Paul, whose air of decisive toughness prompts a nagging Dan (the equally impressive Molony) to accuse him of giving a “kind of Hemingway patina” to his recollections.” London Evening Standard


Check out the trailer and exclusive Royal & Derngate cast interviews with glimpses of footage below


The Body of An American opens at the Royal & Derngate tonight until the 8 March.
Tickets are still available:

Royal & Derngate
27 February – 8 March
Box office: 01604 624811


Comment on Damien in The Body of an American and discuss the play with other fans here.


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