This inaugural production by DONOTALIGHT was selected for the Vault Festival which had to be cancelled this year but there is life after death and it has now surfaced at Southwark. It proves well worthy of survival. The production is not perfect and the play itself does get into a tangle but it is well worth catching. Alice (Hannah Khalique-Brown), a young woman in her early twenties is discovered talking into her phone, a monologue which soon grows tedious especially as on to the stage come Hanna (Martha Watson Allpress), who is a few years older and is conducting a conversation with her friend Max (Ethan Moorhouse) about something or other as they drive to a wedding. The three ices overlap and it gets confusing, but gradually one realises what Alice is talking about is having been seduced as a sixteen year old by an older guy, the singer in a pop group, now famous, and that the relationship, such as it was, lasted – he kept coming back for more. She has also realised that she was not alone. This was what he did. There were other girls. Then it dawns as Max and his old college chum chat that he is the man. Alice has gone to the press and trouble is ahead. It adds up to a compelling little drama which needs some tightening and rather better staging than it gets here but it is a promising debut by Flora Wilson Brown and makes for a sobering, although along the way, entertaining play. Hannah has a nice line in hard boiled repartee. Stars for a piece like this really are a nuisance to bestow – it is not a four star evening, nor is it a two star evening but making it a three star evening is slightly overdoing it. What it is, however, is a play that works well enough in its present shape, has something worth saying and both instructs and entertains in the very best sense. This new company has got off to a promising start by anybody’s standards.
Alice: Hannah Khalique-Brown.
Hannah: Marth Watson Allpress.
Max: Ethan Moorhouse.
Director: Harry Tennison.
Set & Costume Design: Victoria Maytom.
Lighting Designer: Ryan Day.
Sound Designer: Anna Short.
Production Photography: Ellie Kurz.