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World Premiere Of New Play, THE ULTIMATUM GAME Live Streams On Sunday

World Premiere Of New Play, THE ULTIMATUM GAME Live Streams On Sunday

When Jon Gracey wrote two-hander The Ultimatum Game last year, he certainly didn't intend for its debut to take place via a live streaming platform.

But creativity thrives in confined spaces, and as luck would have it, the two actors (Chazz Redhead and Chloe Mashiter) who did the first table read are now in isolation together - and happen to au fait with the ins and outs of streaming platforms and tech. And the director who had started to help develop the show (Charlotte Peters - Warhorse, An Inspector Calls) posted on social media that she was in need of a project to get her through quarantine.

The Ultimatum Game is a high-tension dramedy exploring the consequences of two very different personality types trapped in a room together. Rather like what many people are experiencing at the moment, but with a million pounds at stake.

"We realised that we had ideal circumstances to debut the show, albeit different from what we'd anticipated," says producer Vivienne Egan (Treehouse). So the team assembled to rehearse the work via Zoom chat and perform it for the internet.

"In some ways rehearsing online hasn't been hugely different to the first week of a typical rehearsal period, aside from living in pajama bottoms!" says Peters. "But the intense level of focus towards a computer screen makes it far more challenging. What's been really interesting is that even though it's a play, we're automatically adapting to a more filmic style."

"The possibilities for broadcasting it are really exciting," says Gracey. "It's such a thrill to be able to share it with people around the world, now that we're not constrained by physical distance."

TV game show fans may be familiar with the game theory scenario at the core of the play: the show Golden Balls, which pitted two people against each other in a split it, steal it or lose-it-all scenario, is based on a similar game theory principle.

"The game theory scenario is actually called The Blackmailers' Paradox," says Gracey. "The Ultimatum Game is a different game theory principle but a much better name for a play."

The Ultimatum Game will debut on www.twitch.tv/jongracey on Sunday April 5 at 5pm. Tickets are a suggested donation of £5, payable via www.ko-fi.com/jongracey.



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