Ignorance – The Etcetera Theatre
a cast of six and a one room set, Fortress Productions’
premiere production is a fine vehicle for the talents if its
performers-come-producers and its fledgling writers.
of studied performances and high stakes, the show boasts the
pleasures of a good story well told.
debut of writers Declan Hill and Stephen Hancocks reveals a
distinctive wit and a strong sense of what makes a dark drama.
Social ambitions gone awry fuel an intriguing plot of botched
theft and confused passions. The narrative itself is full of
bluff and double bluff, revolving around three mini cab drivers’
curious decision to betray each other.
all takes place in the firm’s office one fateful afternoon.
In fact it is the set – a functional synthesis of desk,
couch, magazines, telephones and wall maps – that is the
real strength of this well honed production. Within these parameters
the most mundane of happenings becomes intriguing.
sense of claustrophobia builds as the room itself crumbles beneath
the pressure of one dying body, a gun and a knife.
performers are also perfectly cast. Sarah Strong makes a feisty
Yasmin and an amusing foil to Abbey Stirling’s aspiring
underling. Stirling’s seeming desire to please is enough
to ingratiate her with the audience, while Ciara Dooley is transfixing
as the class conscious Annie. What really convinces, however,
is the complicity shared between all on stage.
High energy play
London - Etcetera Theatre - Dec 04
high energy play from new playwrights that is full of double-crosses
that are entertaining.
is an enjoyable romp. This would make a very good first play
indeed and it would stand up well on the Edinburgh Fringe.
programme mentions that the three female actors and the writers
came together to produce a vehicle for the girls. It is memorable
(c) Hils Jago 2004
reviewed Wednesday 8 December 04
last time I recall a story based around a ladies taxi firm was
in the classic 1963 film Carry On Cabby, featuring the saucy
goings-on at Glamcabs. Times have changed a lot since those
cosier, safer days and it would be hard to imagine a more different
scenario than this gritty, black comedy based in a decidedly
unglamorous female cabbie’s.
the violence here actually happens in the office itself, the
catalyst being a ham-fisted attempt to grab the company’s
takings, which pans out none too successfully. Such a menacing
sceanrio requires convincing nastiness, of course, and as Malcolm,
Frank Scantori certainly has that, though he lunges at his first
victim with all the grace of a dart player before being shot
by the seemingly demure, butter wouldn’t melt in her mouth
Belinda, played superbly by the wide-eyed Abbey Stirling. Being
dressed like the fairy on the top of a Christmas tree hardly
lends credibility to her role. On the other hand Yasmin (Sarah
Strong), a hooped earringed chav with real attitude and a criminal
bent, looks every inch the life-embittered character she portrays.
course when such dirty deeds are planned, double-crossing is
the name of the game and there is certainly little honour among
these thieves. Thieves plural that is, for as it turns out,
everyone is in on the scam one way or another and no one is
to be trusted.
of all, company owner Annie (Ciara Dooley), a feisty blonde
definitely intent on having fun, who, for all her pretensions
to be a class above the low-life around her, is just as ammoral
as the rest.
dark ending is also a largely familiar one but the journey getting
to that point is still certainly engaging enough.
Declan Hill, Stephen Hancocks
Management: Fortress Productions
Director: Dan Skili