By David Foley
Directed by Ian Marr
Venue: Connaught Theatre
Date: Friday 15th August 2008
This is a new thriller, set in a Manhattan apartment. It’s a three-hander; the female jewellery designer who owns the apartment, the young chap she brought back for meaningless sex, and the security guard she calls when the young chap won’t leave. At first it seems simple enough. She’s a fairly famous designer, very rich, whose husband died and left her enough money to set up her own business. He’s a young chap on the make; he’s used his expensive digital camera to record their sexual exploits, and plans to put it on the internet unless she forks out fifty thousand dollars. She points out that the video would effectively be an advert for her jewellery – which of her mature customers wouldn’t want to be having sex with a good-looking well-endowed young man? – so go ahead.
Things take a nastier turn when the man still refuses to leave, and she has to call the security guard to evict him. She gets hold of the camera and dunks it in water, but then the young man manages to slip out of the guard’s hold, grab the guard’s gun, and knock him out with it. He then ties up the woman, and starts demanding to know where she’s hidden ‘it’, searching for secret hiding places all the while.
The security guard comes to while the man is in another room , but before he and the woman can deal with the situation, the man returns, and it’s back to square one. Or is it? No more info here, but I will just say that I guessed the sort of person the young man had to be, and what his motive was, and I was pretty sure the suitcase didn’t contain what it was supposed to. The details of Mildred and Edna’s exploits were no surprise (these related to the deceased husband) although I hadn’t known about these characters in advance, but I was suitably misled by aspects of the Emerald Star story. Even so, the play was well written, and I found myself considering all sorts of possibilities along the way. Perhaps this or that had happened, perhaps not. Things flagged a little when it was just the security guard and the lady talking – I think that went on a little too long – but the final section was much tighter, and brought the play to a very satisfactory conclusion. It’s a shame there weren’t more people in tonight – this production deserved better.
© 2008 Sheila Evans at ilovetheatre.me