“I’ve just started writing it”, he tells me. “It’s based on the biography by her widower, Detmar.”
Before that Fountain is preparing to probe the murky depths of sex tourism for a new play. Queen of the Nile follows two middle-aged women from Wakefield who go to Egypt and fall for the same gigolo, Mahmoud.
Fountain has been visiting Luxor for 20 years and was inspired to write the play by a fellow tourist. “I met her in my hotel and she said, ‘I love it here. The beer’s cheap, the men are cheap and they’ve got Emmerdale on satellite…’”
While the play has a tongue-in-cheek, Shirley Valentine feel, it is a “serious comedy”, says Fountain, which will also tackle “the contradictions inherent in sex tourism and the confusions of sexual identity in strict Muslim cultures.” It premieres at Hull Truck Theatre on 18 April.
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