Mar Sin Leat
A short drama about Skye, a transgender woman who goes back to her father’s farm to join him in the burial of their beloved pet — inadvertently reenacting what should have been her mother’s funeral.
When SKYE, a young trans woman, gets a voicemail from her father, FERGUS, saying her beloved pet dog has died, she drives overnight to the family farm in rural Scotland to be there for the burial. As they bury her dog, ARCHIE, Skye is reminded that her younger self was not allowed to attend her mother’s funeral. Fergus believed not taking her was the right thing to do. However, Skye grew up without closure and in the belief Fergus thought she was somehow not strong enough to go.
Ever since, father and daughter have repressed their grief and hid their vulnerabilities. Now, the distance between them has stretched to almost breaking point. With the death of their dog, their emotions run close to the surface. Skye sees a chance to put old grievances to rest and challenges her father to open up and talk.
With Covid-19 we’ve come to know loneliness and loss at unprecedented levels. It forced us to question our way of life, by reminding us of our human need for connection and of the importance of mental health.
Mar Sin Leat focuses on two characters who have grown apart: Fergus, part of an older generation of men taught to hide their emotions, and Skye, a transgender woman keen to be seen and heard for who she really is.
At the age of ten, Scott (Skye’s birth name) was struggling to conform to the local’s expectations of a farmer’s son. Protective of his child, Fergus believed that by sparing Skye from her Mother’s funeral he was shielding her from unnecessary pain. Denied her chance of a goodbye, Skye emulated Fergus’ silence but was taunted by the fear that his decision reflected a rejection of her true self. Their inability to open up about their emotions prevents them from building a more meaningful relationship.
As they come together to bury Archie, they are forced to face their suppressed grief and finally start the healing process.
We are hoping Mar Sin Leat will help instigate a healthy discussion around loss, grief, gender expectations and mental health. In today’s polarized world, it’s important we tell stories that promote compassion and empathy.