Southwark Playhouse, London – until 10 March 2018
In Angry at the Southwark Playhouse, Tyrone Huntley and Georgie Henley (Him and Her in the play) are quite possibly giving two of the finest performances to be found on London’s Fringe. As they tackle Philip Ridley’s six monologues alternately one apiece, each of them immerses themselves in a coruscating display of compelling physical and vocal theatre.
If only Ridley’s script was as good as his cast. He has a keen eye for the zeitgeist of the time and his six speeches touch upon the moments that are recognisable to most of each night’s audience. But the flimsy structure that interlinks the pieces is close to non-existent resulting in a 90 minute (no interval) onslaught of little more than virtue signalling.
There’s a gender neutrality to the show that is of the moment too. Each night sees Him alternate with Her in the performance routine, and even in the brief cast sheet the typical stereotypes are challenged as ‘Her’ is printed in blue, while ‘Him’ is denoted in pink. Disappointingly, Ridley’s arguments are as fluid as his treatment of the sexes.
A very shouty opening routine – the only dialogue of the evening – makes liberal use of the F-word to the extent that the scene could have heralded a Derek & Clive tribute act. But as the solo scenes play out the play evolves into a litany of issues rather than a literary treat…