I had high expectations of ‘Hysteria’, winner of the Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Comedy (1994). The original cast list includes ‘Figments: Love, Death, Guilt, Fear, etc. …’ and this comic play touches on Jewish asylum-seekers, Kristallnacht, parental abuse and euthanasia, that last one in a very off-hand manner. It promised to be a complex bio-drama in the amusing style of Stoppard craftily combined with an Orton-like farce. Freud’s meeting with Dalí was duly bizarre; the mysterious, importunate naked woman was neither sinister nor seductive enough to trigger the plot. Either the play or this production failed to deliver.
Devonshire Park Theatre, Eastbourne, 15 March 2017