On Sunday I got to see Millie, Danny, Bobby, Astrid, Miles and Jude – and hence not Mona and Andre.
The four actors – Chelsea Bognuda, Jonathan Kenyon, Jessica Robinson and Paul Waggott play two characters each. Also several of them appear as props in other scenes.
I enjoyed the show. My favourite monologue was Astrid arrives home early in the morning with torn stockings etc looking like she has had a good night out. She has – too good a night in that she scored – and struggles with whether to tell her boyfriend asleep in the bed what happened.
Also very powerful was Miles – the Merrill Lynch trader who got caught up in the 7/7 bombings in London, and used them as a way to escape his normal life for a couple of years.
The characters are all English, or in one case an American in England. But they are all characters Kiwis can relate to – either from our own experiences, or from good TV dramas.
The actors did a very good job of making their characters real. You could relate to them, and always the sign of a good monologue is that often I was disappointed they finished so quickly (around 13 minutes each).
At times though I did struggle a bit with how they all fitted together. They were individually all very good, but it was only when I read the writer’s note that I saw they were all meant to be about “growing up in a world in which the central value system is based on an ethic of commercial, aesthetic and excess” which leads to a generation who are apathetic and have lost belief in themselves and the world around them.
When I posted recently on the All Blacks test I was at, a reader called me a Steve Tew rugby fan. By that he meant someone who enjoys the game, but is not overly skilled in interpreting what is happening. I thought it a fair critique, and to some degree that applies to me with plays also.
I greatly enjoy going to the theatre and love good humour, or terrifying suspense, or experiencing emotional roller coasters. But I fear all too often I miss some of the “meta data” or hidden messages which expert theatre goers can observe and analyse.
So I guess my reviews are what one might call the “Average Joe” perspective. From that perspective I definitely enjoyed “Eight”, and seeing a talented bunch of actors pull off their monologues. However I didn’t really pick up on the common theme running through them, but that may well be more my failing, than anyone else’s.Tags: Circa, Reviews