at the Royal Court Theatre Upstairs
A better name for Nick Payne’s new solo show might be The Art of Lying. Throughout the monologue, the three stories Payne tells consider the various ways we lie to one another as life comes to an end. It’s a short, simple piece, and though it doesn’t contain the complexity of some of his earlier work, Payne delivers three affecting and heartfelt stories about the fraught relationship between death and truth.
Sat on a yellow plastic chair in front of a makeshift skyline of blue-lit medicine bottles, Payne begins the piece with the story of Maggie Noonan from Milton Keynes, who contracts a degenerative disease which forces her to split up with her partner and move into a home. Continue reading “The Art of Dying” by Nick Payne
created by Nick Payne and Carrie Cracknell
at The Shed, Monday 27th January 2014
*The show features some mainstream songs which are all questionable in their representations of women. As a kind of counterbalance to this, I’ve popped in a few alternative tracks*
Blurred Lines begins and ends with a look at the ‘industry’ of which it is a part. At the top of the show, the cast of eight women recite a list of casting breakdowns which all boil down to stereotypes. The tone and repetition is borderline ritualistic, as if this stuff is so ingrained and accepted that the types can be summoned at will, like a seance for female character clichés. In a riotously funny coda at the other end of the show, the world of theatre itself is shown to be just as much a part of the problem as anything else. Continue reading “Blurred Lines”