Wednesday, 17 September 2014

'True West' Tricycle Theatre ****

The programming currently within Off-West End and Fringe Theatre, this year has proven to be quite successful and the current production that is presently amusing people at Tricycle Theatre, ‘True West’ was one that has been portrayed with such integrity with shocking elements as well. ‘True West’, originally written by Sam Shepard in 1980 portrays the mammoth differences between two brothers, who give the impression that they need to regularly quarrel with each other to show who is the harder sibling. The play is set in Southern California where ambitious television and film writer, Austin, who is is caring for his mothers’ house whilst she's on holiday is frustrated with his older brother, Lee arrives, after being on one of his adventures appears to endeavour to undermine Austin’s aspirations. From the outset, Lee is an unsavoury character who thieves other people’s possessions due to the fact that his life is hardly thrusting, whereas Austin’s recent project, a romance script has received positive conversations with a producer, where they hope it will inevitably be realised within a studio atmosphere. Unluckily for Austin during a meeting with Saul Kimmer, the producer, Lee rudely interrupts them and instigates a dastardly concept of a Western film idea, which comprehends Saul’s interest with Austin's work to diminish vastly. The production sympathises with the youngest brother, and when he completes a challenge to steal the local residences toasters to show to Lee that he can be prosperous with how he lives is superbly comical, and the array of toasted bread and chaos that is increased throughout the performance was somewhat outrageous. Shepard’s narrative it's exceedingly fluid and amazingly engaging as we witness the rivalry between brothers who have such opposing personalities, and how their prospects changes in ways that one found unfair.  The performances by the company of ‘True West’ were admirably brilliant throughout. Eugene O'Hare is ideal as the hopeful scriptwriter, Austin who engrosses his repugnance when his brother is creating a mockery of his art, and his drunken moments were executed with such magnitude. Alex Ferns is grand as the unpleasant, Lee. I did become slightly scared with the violent rage that he exposes when he is confronted about his journeys across the American desert, with a negative expression. Steven Elliott is marvellous as the traitorous producer, Saul. He suggested how spiteful the entertainment industry can be with such effect and precision. Philip Breen's direction is excellent here as he has staged a revival that can turn and audience’s reaction from laughter to sheer shock. Furthermore, I found that he apprehended the fraught environment of brotherly relationships with tenacity and ease. Max Jones’ set and costume designs are spectacular, as the atmosphere of South Californian home works wonders entirely and the destruction which is progressed through each scene transitions were particularly thrilling. I commiserate with the whole Stage Management team, especially after each performance. Overall, the experience of ‘True West’ was incredibly enjoyable and entertaining, and well worth a ticket purchase.

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