Monday, 7 May 2012

DNA (theatre)

I'm wasn't sure if I was going to get another theatre trip in May, but having just been given Theatre Tokens for my birthday, I'm definitely going to see the second currently touring Hull Truck play.
The first was The Lady In The Van, the Alan Bennett comedy, which we were lucky enough to catch at Brighton's Theatre Royal in April. Nichola McAuliffe was tremendous in the title role and I was amazed to see The Lady's vehicles actually being driven onto the stage. How did they fit in the wings?!

The second tour is DNA and this one is coming to Eastbourne. The Dennis Kelly play has been directed and designed by Anthony Banks at the National Theatre and features a predominantly young cast. First performed at the National Theatre in 2008, this startling play is fast becoming a contemporary-classic with young audiences and has recently become a core set-text on the GCSE English syllabus.
Eastbourne Theatres have put on a couple of 'younger' plays recently which have done well - firstly 'Punk Rock' and then the incredible 'Mogadishu' - so I hope this one will also get good support.

Dennis Kelly explores the dynamics of group behaviour in this compelling thriller. A group of teenagers do something bad, really bad, then panic and cover the whole thing up. But when they find that the cover-up unites them and brings harmony to their otherwise fractious lives, where's the incentive to put things right? 

Devonshire Park Theatre, Thurs 17th - Sat 19th May
All evenings 19:45, Fri & Sat matinees 14:30
Suitable for ages 12+

I have written my review in the Comments below.

1 comment:

  1. DNA review: We were surprised on arriving at the massed ranks of teenagers making up the audience. The Devonshire Park stalls were easily half-full – quite respectable for a mid-week play – and practically everyone was under twenty. This provided a very different dynamic with the audience reacting much more vocally to the actors than happens with older audiences. Mostly girls, they adored the vulnerable character of Brian but were practically spitting feathers at the strong-willed Cathy, especially as her skirts got shorter. So much for sisterhood!
    The story, of eight teenagers getting themselves into deeper and deeper straits as they attempt to cover up the accidental murder of a classmate, is well-plotted with unexpected twists. It is short at only about an hour and a quarter and was performed straight through without an interval.
    The entirely young cast was excellent, totally professional, and my overall impression was of a very slick production. I liked the backdrop of hanging plastic strips which provided the screen for the projected scenery. It was particularly effective for the Woods as the slight drifting made the branches appear to be moving – spooky! It also meant we could swiftly travel between scenes because the sparse set was only comprised of the backdrop, more projected lighting providing texture effects onto the stage itself and a simple ‘grass’ mat for the Field. However, I wasn’t convinced by the stop/start motion of the actors between scenes. For me, this didn’t really work, but the well-timed sound effects were a great touch.