An unfinished love story will haunt you, until you pick it up again...

Gabriella La Rocca reviews Michael Weller’s 'What The Night Is For'


What the Night is For plays at The Tabard Theatre until 4th April 2009 (7:30pm; 2:30pm Saturday Matinee).

Tickets are priced at £15 for adults and £12 for concessions.

Book online at or 08448 472264

Tabard Theatre, 2 Bath Road, London W4 1LW

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You can’t shut the book without reading the last chapter. Love stories, like novels have a beginning, a middle and an end. No matter how disappointing the book or the person you have been in love with is, you have to end it. Like a book you stopped reading, an unfinished love story will haunt you, until you pick it up again.

What happens when you do pick it up? Do you start from where you left it? It’s the end of a love story that never took place that is magnified and deeply explored in this powerful play by Michael Weller. The intimacy of two people is torn but seems still alive.

Melinda and Adam meet up ten years after they had an affair in New York. He decides to look her up for old time’s sake while he is on business in the Mid West where she now lives. As friends who have not seen each other for a long time they begin with general talk about their marriages, their children and their jobs. Soon the ‘what ifs’ creep into the conversation and the heaviness of the past, wrong decisions merges, resulting in their emotions controlling the evening.

Is the love still there? Or is it the emptiness of their marriages that is turning their hearts to the past? They test each other; give each other fragments of themselves only if the other opens up. The attraction is still there, ‘the voice is still young, while everything else sags,’ she says, but it’s mingled with insecurities, disappointments break through, and they are left feeling even more vulnerable.

You are immersed in the distorted intimacy of the characters, and there are some painful scenes which are well performed. It is a good attempt by Geezer Productions to revive this West End hit at the Tabard, with Stacy Thunes as Melinda in the driving seat, but then all women are when there’s a turning point in a loves story. Are they? Is it not their decision if sex is going to take place that night or not?

Gabriella La Rocca


Michael Weller’s ‘What the Night is For’ has its first major London revival at the Tabard Theatre; the show that saw cult star Gillian Anderson’s West End stage debut. Premiered back in 2002 at the Comedy theatre and lauded by the critics.

Featuring Stacy Thunes and Tim Charrington, What the Night is For runs at the Tabard Theatre until Saturday 4 April.

March 24, 2009