Found111, London – until 17 December 2016
As ever with this quirky venue,this show focuses on the rawness of human emotions and memory that reveals dark secrets. Simon Evans delivers an electrifying and yet at times disturbing production of Sam Shepard’s examination of the contrary nature of love through one couple’s eyes.
Eddie and May are a pair who are caught in a vicious circle in a love that shows that although neither can stand to be in the same room together, equally they can’t stand to be apart. Over the course of an evening, set in a motel room, they bitterly confront each other with tales of truth and lies, as their past begins to unravel in front of us.
Thanks to the atmospheric and constant flickering lighting by Elliot Griggs, the audience is kept on their toes about the secrets that are unveiled about the couple that are at the centre of the story, emphasising their passion and anger towards each other.
Sam Shepard’s play almost feels like a series of monologues put together, with Eddie, May and the Old Man all having their say about the story of Eddie and May’s backgrounds. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing as it allows the audience to get inside the characters heads and get a real sense of their emotions. But at the same time it feels as though the production isn’t able to flow as easily as you would like.
Adam Rothenberg as Eddie comes across as unstable and not always in control of his emotions, flitting between aggressive and charming – an electrifying performance, which also reveals a character torn between loyalty to his father and the truth of what happened (an incident that I’m not going to reveal as it will ruin the suspense if you are planning on seeing it).
Lydia Wilson as May equally as strong, vulnerable and hurt from Eddie’s behaviour towards her and the struggle of trying to come to terms with her past. She, like the audience, never fully knows what Eddie is going to do next.
Meanwhile, Joe McGann’s importance in the play becomes increasingly clear and important – coming across as a ghost whose past fails to leave the couple alone until things are resolved properly. As he gets more involved, the enormity of his choices in life and the impact they have had on the couple is shocking and reveal the selfish nature of his character.
Of them all, Luke Neal as Martin has perhaps the least to do, awkwardly becoming a councillor for May and Eddie as they bitterly expose truth and lies at each other. His is a part that doesn’t require too much and can come across as slightly awkward and out of place.
Fool for Love is a play that leaves the audience questioning whether what they have just seen is in fact real or an illusion as well as making us question how do we ever know what anyone tells us is true. It is an angry and suspicious piece of work that delivers in keeping the audience on the edge of their seat from beginning to end.
Although the play and the production is gripping and intense from beginning to end, it also maddening in the way in which it leaves many questions unanswered, with no real conclusion or closure for any of the characters. But the constant changing of moods and the interesting dynamic between the cast ensure that this is a dynamic production to bid farewell to Found111.
Fool for Love will continue to play at Found111 until the 17th December. To book tickets visit: Discount Theatre.com, Last Minute.com, Theatre Tickets Direct.co.uk, Theatre People.com and UK Tickets.co.uk.