Writing, direction, acting and set are all of a high standard, melding into a surprisingly thrilling and action packed visit to the theatre.Father (Robert), mother (Vivienne) together with teenage son (Ralph) and daughter (Frankie) arrive in their luxury garden-house cabin for a spontaneous family holiday in a Kenyan coastal resort. Vivienne (played by Hermione Gulliford) just had to resign as a Minister in the British Cabinet because husband Robert (Tom Beard) was caught by the notorious British scandal-press inappropriately flirting with a younger woman over the internet. Will they manage to work out their marital crisis in their holiday paradise? Meanwhile, Ralph (Tom Rhys-Harris) and Frankie (Shannon Tarbet) have to deal with a secret of their own. And then waiting for them, is Nala (Susan Wokoma) the resort’s chambermaid delivering the beautiful swan-shaped towel arrangement. Does she have designs on the buff teenager for whom she has just turned up the bed?
Polly Stenham delivers a one-act explosive action thriller. Excellent acting performances by a talented cast and the versatile set by Naomi Dawson make this play reach near action movie quality. The set is all the more remarkable as the play uses the temporary theatre structure that looks like a wooden version of Battersea Power Station. There’s violence, there’s blood; so this is certainly not a play for the very young or the faint hearted. Some of the political storyline will make those who do not religiously follow the Guardian’s political line on foreign policy wince. But that is a small price to pay for the unexpected and ingeniously creative twists and turns brilliantly brought to stage by Maria Aberg’s dynamic direction.
Writing, direction, acting and set are all of a high standard, melding into a surprisingly thrilling and action packed visit to the theatre.