(Seen at the afternoon performance on 28th February 2015)
This truly is "sell a kidney for a ticket" theatre.
everything. These are simple lives, simple aims, simple decisions to aid, simple
decisions to love. All devastatingly complicated in eventual practise.
Ivo Van Hove has all actors barefoot inside an empty Perspex ring, audience
on three sides. A combination
of chess and all-in cage fighting, the actors circle with switchblade words
sheathed yet ever present. The simplest prop and single pair of shoes alter the
dynamic irrevocably, moving the piece onwards.
Tom Gibbons gives us a sound track perfectly judged to ratchet tension still
further, so tight the theatre should have
a defibrillator by every seat.
Most of all, Mark Strong (Eddie), Nicola Walker (Beatrice), Phoebe Fox
(Catherine) form an unconventional family unit shot through with raw
practicality. Allowing Marco (Emun Elliot) and Louis (Richard Hansell) into the
fold unsettles Eddie to an inevitable finish. Michael Gould (Alferi) gives a
legal commentary framing the whole as it plays out over two mesmerising hours of
heightened theatrical excellence.
The monkey will never look at this play the same way again, and most of all,
it urges all readers to do what they can to see this.