Drowned by medi­ocrity

Western Leader - - OUT & ABOUT - DE­BRIN FOX­CROFT

RE­VIEW: This play needed six more scenes to make sense, and yet I was ab­so­lutely thrilled when it ended.

The best way I can ex­plain it is this: When the lights went out, there was a lull of around 20 sec­onds be­fore the clap­ping started be­cause no-one re­alised the play was ac­tu­ally over.

Even in a dark­ened theatre, the looks of con­fu­sion were vis­i­ble be­fore a brave soul started a slow clap that caught on.

The main is­sue with this play was the com­bi­na­tion of gen­eral medi­ocrity and the odd de­ci­sion to have the lead char­ac­ter Ray, played by Short­land Street’s Ryan Carter, be a swim­ming For­rest Gump – with­out any of the like­abil­ity or sim­ple mo­ti­va­tions.

In the pro­mo­tional ma­te­rial, Ray was her­alded as a swim­mer with a ‘‘wa­ter­logged’’ moral com­pass and yet that assess­ment of the char­ac­ter’s de­ci­sion mak­ing struck me as way too ad­vanced for what we saw. None of the char­ac­ters were par­tic­u­larly lik­able, and I spent the en­tire 90 min­utes with­out any­one to root for.

Although the con­stant red hues jarred with the fact that they were meant to be pool­side, the use of loud noise and strobe lights pointed into the theatre to mark scene changes were more prob­lem­atic.

Visit atc.co.nz for de­tails.

STUFF

Red Speedo is show­ing at the ASB Water­front Theatre un­til Novem­ber 15.

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