Online Turf Provides Turf for National Theatre Production ‘Cesario’

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Online Turf expands into the world of theatre with an installation of turf at National Theatre production 'Cesario'

Chandos portrait of William Shakespeare

Online Turf provides turf for part of the World Shakespeare Festival

"Turf is a quick and easy way of completely changing the feel of a room, and does seem to be increasing in popularity for entertainment and exhibitions."

Online Turf provided turf for recent National Theatre production 'Cesario', helping to create an immersive theatre experience for this family play. Using this and other innovate ideas within the theatre itself, the production company was able to create a family-friendly atmosphere and invite the audience to think on the issues presented therein.

Running from 22nd August-25th August 2012 as part of the World Shakespeare Festival, the play examined Shakespeare’s twin children Judith and Hamnet. Judith insists on being referred to as Cesario, wearing boy’s clothes and refusing to listen to her mother or her sister. Why? Because her brother Hamnet is very ill, and Cesario will do anything to keep Hamnet with her… Examining Shakespeare’s use of twins in some of his most famous works (Cesario is the male name chosen by the twin Viola in 'Twelfth Night'), the cast was made up of local London school children with an emphasis on making the play accessible to local families. The internal play area, with a small section of grass, added to this immersive experience, bringing a small piece of the countryside into the London theatre.

Although Online Turf generally specialises in providing turf for the domestic garden, it’s increasingly common for turf to be used for entertaining and events; recent turf use in the worlds of theatre, fashion and parties have all increased, with turf making a popular short-term installation. Turf is a product subject to a very short shelf-life, as it is a natural product that requires soil, sunlight and rain for long-term growth. However, being a resilient plant, turf can withstand a few days (weather and heat permitting) before being re-planted, and still retain a fresh ‘outdoors’ look, making it perfect to set a mood or a theme. However, it is important for any prospective party planners to ensure the turf they buy is as fresh to possible to ensure the best look.

“We’re always pleased to help supply events like this,” says M.D. Ian Mercer. “Often our turf is being used in ways we can’t imagine, but it’s great to see how imaginative people can be. Turf is a quick and easy way of completely changing the feel of a room, and does seem to be increasing in popularity for entertainment and exhibitions.”

Online Turf’s website for orders – both domestic and for entertainment purposes – can be found at http://www.onlineturf.co.uk and staff are available to advise on a variety of installations. The National Theatre runs plays, workshops and other events throughout the year, and their website can be found at http://www.nationaltheatre.org.uk.

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Colleen Cheetham-Gerrard
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