Old Red Lion Theatre, London – until 25 March 2017
Althea Theatre presents a beautiful piece of theatre that celebrates the power of language and love in all its forms through a wide variety of stories that cross generations and different eras – all linked by love.
As I was watching this beautiful drama written and directed by Lilac Yosiphon, I was reminded of what Albus Dumbledore so aptly said in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: “Words are, in my not-so-humble opinion, our most inexhaustible source of magic. Capable of both inflicting injury, and remedying it.” This is something that is made constantly clear in this heart breaking, emotional and sensitively presented production.
One Last Thing (For Now) is inspired by love letters that have been written at war times across the world, told through a variety of languages and stories affecting those from across the globe. If anything it is a play that shows that even through times of conflict it is the powerful messages of love that come through strongly.
Lilac Yosiphon’s atmospheric production flows between each individual story with ease – even if at times the interchanges between scenes can seem a little bit chaotic with the number of people in the limited space on stage – and is capable of drawing your attention and holding it for the duration.
But the production also reveals how letters can be used to conceal secrets and emotions as well as a way of expressing them as a couple of the stories suggest, leading to one very unexpected twist in one of them that generates a massive shock.
One Last Thing (For Now) also cleverly uses a variety of languages – not purely English to show how universal the effect of letters and war has on people across the world, whether it is skyping their fiance from the other side of the world or trying to protect a person from the devastating truth about one woman’s husband’s death. Many times during the show we don’t understand what is being said but perhaps that’s not as important as the way in which it is being said.
All of the cast deliver excellent performances, really getting to the heart of their characters and their stories with great passion, compassion and genuine fascination that in turn affects the audience’s ability to be drawn in completely to what is happening in front of them.
Overall, it is a must-see production that really gets to the heart of what it means to be human with all our flaws, fears and of course the love that we are capable of providing to those who are closest to us.