British playwright Mike Bartlett’s latest work, Wild, is a darkly comic look at contemporary issues of privacy, clearly inspired by the case of American whistleblower Edward Snowden. First performed at Hampstead Theatre, London in June 2016, the play has its Australian premiere in May courtesy of Melbourne Theatre Company. Currently in rehearsal, the gripping three-hander is directed by Dean Bryant and stars Nicholas Denton, Anna Lise Phillips and Toby Schmitz.
In Wild, American whistleblower Andrew is holed up in a ‘nondescript hotel room’, a fugitive from justice. Over a tense 90 minutes, he is visited by two individuals, presenting themselves as employees of a secretive organisation that can offer him protection. Schmitz plays one of these employees, a character wreathed in mystery and simply referred to as ‘Man’. Here he traces his evolving relationship with the play, its connection to post-war theatre, and how his character might just be an alien from outer space.
Toby Schmitz in rehearsal for Wild. Photo © Deryk McAlpin
What were your first impressions of Wild?
It was an offer, you know, which sometimes is a fortunate thing that happens in one’s career. So I read it the first time, going “where are...