Review: Right Now

SOMEWHERE off stage, a baby cries, and cries, and cries. Distraught, Alice runs to placate it. * * * * Traverse Theatre, Cambridge Street

Monday, 25th April 2016, 3:32 pm
Updated Monday, 25th April 2016, 5:09 pm
Right Now directed by Michael Boyd

Award-winning playwright Catherine-Anne Toupin’s Right Now boasts that it is a play with ‘a dark heart’. ‘A disquieting exploration of one woman’s crisis and darkest desires,’ no less.

Running 80 minutes straight through at Traverse 1 this week, it proves a gripping glimpse into the living nightmare that comes with madness... Or does it?

As Alice and Ben settle into their new flat, they quickly realise the family across the hall hope to be more than just good neighbours. Enter the seductively sinister Juliette and Gilles, and their strange son, François.

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Told in a series of vignettes, neighbours become friends and then something more intimate as the wine flows. Secrets are revealed and temptations succumbed to... but is any one what, or who, they seem?

As Juliette, the ever commanding Maureen Beattie relishes her middle-aged character’s sexually charged behaviour with a knowing smile and move of the knee. Guy Williams equally glories in Gilles’ lascivious nature, while Dyfan Dwyfor creates quite the oddest of the three. His Francois, petulant and childlike despite his years.

Railing against their attentions, initially at least, Lindsey Campbell’s histrionic Alice contrasts sharply with Sean Biggerstaff’s confidently natural Ben, a performance that anchors the production.

As undercurrents bubble to the surface, culminating in a ‘Tales of the Unexpected’ type twist, realities merge, not fully successfully, forcing the questioning of all that has gone before.

Captivating none the less.

Run ends 7 May