One of the biggest challenges with attempts was the script itself. Unlike conventional plays there were no characters in the script. There were simply lines of dialogue. Also there were no stage directions to work with so everything had to be created from the language itself. This was a huge challenge from both the actors and the director’s standpoint.
Something that was discussed throughout the rehearsal period was Crimps use of language. This was at times emotive and extremely violent. Crimp uses provocative dialogue at times because the obvious constraints of theatre do not allow for the visual (perhaps more visceral) images that a film can use. At a time when films and plays have both become more graphic in there depiction of violence, Crimp effectively uses dialogue to portray the desperation and despair of the human spirit.

The main theme of ‘attempts’ is the idea of the woman. Who is this character? What does she represent in today’s society? These are the main questions that the plays asks. The analysis of the representation of women which this play offers is unique and fascinating.

This is the first play I have chosen to direct in the Wilde Theatre. The huge space within the Wilde gives isolation to the performances which would be impossible to create anywhere else and reflects the often desperate scenarios that we see. Ultimately as someone who has grown more and more frustrated with the endless obsessions with consumerism and the objectification of women in the 21st century society I felt that this play was a necessity rather than a project.

James McDonagh


Sadly while we were rehearsing this play we had the terrible news that one of our colleagues, Robin Goodchild, passed away on Saturday 10th January (age 27). He was a fellow student of mine at the Central school of speech and drama and performed in our first film Catalyst. It is always tragic when someone young dies but it is particularly sad in Robin’s case as he was very talented and had strived for many years to start his career in Theatre. We dedicated the run of this play to him.
Attempts On Her Life

Denise Meller
John Ferguson
Jenni McDonagh
Rory O’Connor
Eamonn Dunne
Nicholas Leftwich
James McDonagh
Christian Oliver
Sophie Jackson


Lewis Harman
Karl King

Film/media and Artwork
Nigel Skinner

James McDonagh
By Martin Crimp
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