Sunday Evening at the Theatre: The Interview

The Omniscient Mussel Theatre is proud to present a fabulous one act play provisionally entitled The Interview.

Dramatis personae
Distinguished Professor – a well known expert on Shostakovich and, as it turns out, semiotics.
Somewhat Younger Professor – a quintessentially British academic, stammering, fumbling, hair constantly falling in the eyes, razor sharp wit.
Miss Mussel – PhD candidate, forthright and intelligent with no patience for academic hubris. Mouth perhaps a little to fast for the brain.

Miss Mussel is in a small office deep in the heart of England getting ready for her PhD interview. Distinguished Professor has already discussed the proposed thesis topic and is now, along with Somewhat Younger Professor, initiating a relaxed, informal grilling of the candidate.

SYP: Can I get you a glass of water?
MM: Yes, that would be lovely, thanks.

[water appears in plastic cup. DP still rummaging absently through papers on desk]

SYP: Right then, let’s get started. Did you have a question DP?
DP: So, Miss Mussel….emm..[rummages more] what is your opinion on semiotics?

[slight pause]

MM: Ummm….well….I think it’s a load of bollocks really.

[DP looks stunned but quickly recovers. SYP is also surprised and tries to casually cover his mouth with his hand]

MM: [very matter-of-factly] I mean, there is certainly some value to it but at the end of the day, you can always find what you’re looking for. If you want the second theme of K407 to have a homo-erotic subtext, it will.

[SYP suddenly develops some sort of breathing problem and starts to make strange snorting sounds. His face is flushed and his eyes are watering. His whole upper body is tremoring and he studiously avoids eye contact with DP]

DP: [fidgets in chair and seems slightly uncomfortable] Right. Well there certainly are many opinions about it and it’s nice to see that you are able to articulate your point of view so clearly. Did you have any questions SYP?

[SYP is now feigning a coughing spasm and can only nod that he has no further questions.]

DP: Ok then. That about wraps things up at this end. Give us a few days to talk this over and we’ll be in touch.
SYP: It was really lovely to meet you. A real pleasure. I do hope we see more of you in future.

[scene fades to black]

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