It is the modern parallels which gives The Haunting Of Alice Bowles its depth and resonance and Philip Franks and the Original Theatre Company are to be congratulated for the equivalences which they have drawn out.
For a comedy, there are not enough laughs. Although Torben Betts is perfectly skilled at delivering humorous dialogues, in Monogamy there is very little sun, but plenty of glowering darkness.
So many characters – and their troublesome characteristics – have piled in, manic sitcom style, with bursts of backstory and downright bafflement, that it seems a problem beyond solution in a final hour. That is why you should not leave in the interval.
I can’t deny it, when I first heard the staging for Tennessee Williams’ Confessional was ‘semi-immersive’, I rolled my eyes for it has become a much-abused term by arts marketeers. But on arriving at Southwark Playhouse, being encouraged to go into the Little straightaway and thus experiencing Justin Williams’ design, I was blown away.
This earthy and edgy production keeps you on your toes, as people often rise to their feet and go and order drinks at the bar and interaction between the cast and the regular audience members is frequent.