Desires of Frankenstein

The Play

An expressionistic contemporary reworking of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein myth.

A madman languishes, sectioned in an NHS mental health institution. He claims that, long ago, he created a monster. The rational psychiatrist in charge of his case, Dr Trish, refuses to believe such railings. But the old man, Frankenstein, insists that he created a pretty, soulless young man.

FRANKENSTEIN: ‘T was but a wicked wretch. No feelings, no altruistic emotions. “Me, me, me” all of the time. A selfish villain. I tried to kill him. Snatch back the gift of life which I’d bestowed. But the fiend escaped my wrath. Escaped with the assistance of my immoral, twisted assistant: the rotten Ygor.

In the depths of the urban sprawl of the same city, another old man with a curved spine lives in a council tower block flat with his kept boy, a demanding autistic lad with a pretty form and a heart of glass. This old man is named Ygor, and daytimes he goes out on the rob, mugging vulnerable victims in order to feed the Monster in his care, in return for the Monster's sexual favours.

Dr Trish needs to cut his budget. He decides to release Frankenstein into the care of the community. The madman sees this as a fortuitous turn of events, as now he can track down and kill the Monster and Ygor. But Trish isn’t interested in an old man's raving; he has desires of his own to satisfy, and the lonely Nurse who works alongside him at the mental health institution fits the bill well enough.

TRISH: Met at eight.
NURSE: On our date.
TRISH: Saw a film.
NURSE: Then back home.
TRISH: To her place.
NURSE: His charming face.
TRISH: Coffee then wine.
NURSE: Chatted some time.
TRISH: Soon she was drunk.
NURSE: Talked me into a bunk.
TRISH: Gave her one.
NURSE: He had his fun.
TRISH: Cigarette.
NURSE: Shouldn’t have let.
TRISH: Now I must go.
NURSE: So soon? No!
TRISH: Where are my shoes?
NURSE: Will I see you again?
TRISH: Of course. At work. Daily.

Frankenstein is given a room in a seedy boarding house run by a grasping landlady, Mrs Ragwort. He spends his days walking the streets, hoping to right his past wrong. Soon enough, he and Ygor come face to face - but to the latter, Frankenstein is just another "old git" to be mugged.

Desires of Frankenstein opens the lid on a world of synthetic desire, in which contemporary men and woman lie in thrall to their own creations.

Casting Requirements
1 f, 5 m or 2f, 4m (with doubling)