|Oh, The Humanity: Oh, The Tedium|
Penny Flood reviews the current production at The Tabard Theatre
I want to start on a positive note. The direction and production of this play are superb. The set, with its big white stage and background surrounded by all the clutter you’d expect in a busy studio are perfect with clever use of lighting. And the cast of nine never put a foot wrong. The problem is the play itself, or rather the five little playlets that it is comprised of.
There’s no central story, no dialogue and no narrative, just a series of unrelated monologues and duologues. With nothing to hold it together and no obvious reason for any of them being there, it quickly became tedious.
To be fair, there are some witty lines, but nothing really sharp. For example, a coach sees a reflection of himself and has to face up to the fact that that’s what he looks like and he’s not just having a bad day. Later on, an airline spokeswoman explaining a plane crash says she thinks gravity had something to do with it.
The only time it came alive for me was the in last sketch where a couple are confused about whether they’re going to a christening or a funeral and realise too late that they’re not going anywhere because they’re on chairs and not in a car. Beckett would have a field day with that situation but it wasn’t developed and like every other sketch it ended up going nowhere.
If you’re wondering about the title, it’s what the reporter said as he witnessed the Hindenberg disaster in 1937 where 36 people died.
September 12, 2014