SNAPSHOT – Hope Theatre

In London theatre, Opinion, Plays, Reviews by Laura KresslyLeave a Comment

Hope Theatre, London – until 10 June 2017

James and Daniel are chalk and cheese, and very much in love. The unemployed photographer and Canary Wharf stockbroker are adorably domestic, but both are hiding secrets. When James’ uni mate and ex-girlfriend Olivia vengefully reveals one of them, this irrevocably opens the floodgates to the rest. Excellent performances gives this domestic drama its punch. Whilst the script is far from groundbreaking, it’s an accurate reflection of human intentions and fallibility.

Brian Martin plays the lost and frustrated James, a poor artist lacking direction and his own income. Martin’s Irish charisma is undeniable, and his character’s haplessness is enticing. He’s the sort of bloke that needs looking after, though his attempts to find independence are misguided and hurtful. Joey Akubeze is Daniel, the sweetly virginal trader sucked in by James’ puppyish charm and devotion. Even though he easily can support James, his frustration at his laziness is understandable. The two have lovely, genuine chemistry and are totally believable as a couple.

George Johnston’s script is non-linear and episodic, with too-short scenes that allow for little development within themselves. It’s pleasing to piece the story together even though the beginning and end are easy to work out quickly – it brings to mind The Last 5 Years, but with less order and focus. It lacks depth and the story feels underdeveloped due to its structure, but the characters are sound.

This isn’t a play with deep profundity, but it resonates on a level of realisation that we’re all flawed humans trying to do our best in a world that isn’t inclined to support us on an individual level. The script needs lengthening to give it a bit more substance, but its foundations are there, and the detailed characters combined with easily watchable performances distract from the issues with the text.

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Laura Kressly
Laura is a US immigrant who has lived in the UK since 2004. Originally trained as an actor with a specialism in Shakespeare, she enjoyed many pre-recession years working as a performer, director and fringe theatre producer. When the going got too tough, she took a break to work in education as a support worker, then a secondary school drama teacher. To keep up with the theatrical world, she started reviewing for Everything Theatre and Remotegoat in 2013. In 2015, Laura started teaching part time in order to get back into theatre. She is now a freelance fringe theatre producer and runs her independent blog, theplaysthethinguk.com.
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Laura Kressly on RssLaura Kressly on Twitter
Laura Kressly
Laura is a US immigrant who has lived in the UK since 2004. Originally trained as an actor with a specialism in Shakespeare, she enjoyed many pre-recession years working as a performer, director and fringe theatre producer. When the going got too tough, she took a break to work in education as a support worker, then a secondary school drama teacher. To keep up with the theatrical world, she started reviewing for Everything Theatre and Remotegoat in 2013. In 2015, Laura started teaching part time in order to get back into theatre. She is now a freelance fringe theatre producer and runs her independent blog, theplaysthethinguk.com.

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