Various times until 29th August @ Traverse
By Emily P
The morning after the night before, a pyjama-clad man attempts to tidy up the debris. He has a collapses, is eventually found and taken to hospital. Between moments of detached confusion as he is treated in hospital or receives visits from his wife he experiences non-sequential flash backs of his life including the events leading up to his hung-over heart-attack.
We witness these well-paced dips into his childhood tragedies, his meeting with his wife and the trials of their marriage and slowly the character and his life is revealed to us. There are many moments of light relief coming from the well written interaction of the characters and especially from the passion of the mould-expert. The dissolve between the scenes is often spectacularly done, emulating his mind as it struggles with the past, present, imagined and experienced.
The acting is uniformly excellent and the whole production is stylish and slick. The use of live video feed especially is effective – in particular when the large backdrop screen shows our heros perspective from his hospital bed. The live sound effects – although charming aren’t essential to enjoy the creation of atmosphere and location from the minimal set dressing.
This is a thoroughly enjoyable piece of theatre and the narrative and its theatrical presentation have been handled with dexterity and style. However, the subject matter – a man’s confrontation with his past and his contemplation of the end of his lifetime’s pursuits brings little new or stimulating to the Traverse stage.