Review: This Much (or an act of Violence Towards the Institution of Marriage), Soho Theatre

“Put it away, someone might see!”

What does marriage equality really mean for gay relationships? A chance to just be like straight people, to perhaps repeat the patterns of our parents, or something more, something different. This tension is where John Fitzpatrick locates his play This Much (or an act of Violence Towards the Institution of Marriage), seen in Edinburgh last summer and now making its bow in the Soho Theatre’s upstairs space.

And it’s Gar doesn’t know what he wants – living with his partner Anthony who keeps dropping hints about how many kids he wants (4) and how nice it would be to get hitched, and conducting a fling with online hook-up Albert who’s more interested in the most daring place he can flash his cock. Caught between the two men, the stability of one and the sexual excitement of the other, Gar is forced to confront what he really wants from life. Continue reading “Review: This Much (or an act of Violence Towards the Institution of Marriage), Soho Theatre”

Review: Thérèse Raquin, Theatre Royal Bath

“I am yours. Do what you want with me”

It is clearly the moment for Thérèse Raquin– a stage adaptation in Bath (and touring to Malvern and Cambridge), the Finborough’s musical version transferring to the Park Theatre, and a film of the story also hitting our cinemas recently. Émile Zola’s 1867 novel heralded a new world of naturalism in literature in its focus on mood rather than character and has remained an enduring classic, hence this confluence of versions now and a cheeky trip to the penultimate show of the run at the gorgeous Theatre Royal Bath.

Reflecting Zola’s intent, Jonathan Munby’s direction is highly theatrical and brings a powerful lyricism to the stage, bringing in Ann Yee to provide a fluid movement style that is near-balletic and which captures the yearning spirit perfectly – in a world where so much is unsaid, body language becomes ever more eloquent. And Helen Edmundson’s version emphasises Thérèse’s elemental connection to the water and the fevered eroticism that takes her over, unutterably disrupting her world as sex, murder and self-destruction come a-knocking to liven up her dull life forcibly married to her cousin in the Parisian backstreets. Continue reading “Review: Thérèse Raquin, Theatre Royal Bath”