They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?

Director Ellie Nixon
Cast Students of BA (Hons) Acting, AUB
Year 2009
Location Bournemouth, UK

Desperate times lead to drastic action

This production has created fantastic collaborative opportunities between courses at the Arts University Bournemouth combining the talents of students from the BA (Hons) Costume with Production Design, who have designed and built the 1930’s costumes. BA (Hons) Film students have provided some of the visual elements of this multi-media production and the poster was designed by a student on the BA (Hons) Illustration course.

‘They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?’ was written by the author Horace McCoy in 1935 and tells the story of Robert Syverton, a young drifter who unexpectedly finds himself part of a group of disparate characters, mangled by the Depression and desperate to win a dance marathon. There he meets Gloria Beatty, a self-destructive character who has learned to survive on bitterness and a survival instinct. Continuous motion dance marathons became very popular during the Depression Years and came to symbolise a culture struggling to make sense of a world devastated by poverty and uncertainty.