Friday, September 24

The Cheeseboard Predicament

- August 26, 2018

With shades of Pinter, Beckett and Ionesco, this brand new play also had tinges of Dickens in its grim portrayal of modern deprivation and the impact of poverty. Which all in all makes it sound far from comedic – but nothing could be further from the truth. Tom Akehurst’s script is full of painful humour and director Nicola Haydn has wrung every sour moment from the talented cast. Set in a contemporary dystopia this is a story of despair and delusion, a poignant illustration of an ever widening divide between those who have and those who have not.

Jonathan Rice is stunning as Miriam, the deluded victim wavering between fantasy and truth. Sally Best dominates artfully as his wife Rachel and Sian Hutchinson is excellent as the compliant and oppressed sister-in-law Josephine.

Jamie Martin is the eponymous anti-hero/hero Cheeseboard, the catalyst in the sad realisation of the desperate straits that they find themselves in. He plays it quite brilliantly, almost the angel of truth searching to find redemption for them all in their rapidly declining circumstances.

I loved the live score written and performed by James Smith, that lonely banjo adding an air of sadness – and comedic charm too.

This is a fascinating new work, in places rather raw, but so full of potential that it had me on the edge of my sleeper at BOAT, our beautiful open air theatre – and I look forward to seeing more from this fascinating new writer.

BrightonOpen Air Theatre

25 August

Andrew Kay

Rating: ★★★★☆


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