Review: Either, at Hampstead Theatre
Non-assigned and unnamed millennials go in search of identity, experience and sexual fulfilment
10 October, 2019 — By Sipora Levy
Either – a Dangerous Liaisons for the millennial generation? Photo: Robert Day
IT is rare to see a first full-length play by an unknown writer that lights up the theatre in as exciting a way as Ruby Thomas’s Either.
It seems all those involved with the production think so too as the performances, direction and set design are all immaculate.
Either is witty, challenging and wise and not one of its 75 minutes is wasted.
In an interview, Thomas says her play is about “the paradox of choice: consumer culture and sexual liberation have reached a point where the options can feel endless”.
Her characters are trying to find love but also trying to escape from an overwhelming sense of mortality.
Late in the play one of the characters is faced with the death of a parent, resulting in family secrets being exposed and a re-evaluation of their lifestyle.
In Either we have six non-assigned and unnamed millennials in search of identity, experience and sexual fulfilment. Because they have no names or gender, the characters are able to experiment with an open relationship that is fascinating to watch. On a small triangular grey set, designed by Bethany Wells, with doors opening into the wings, six actors change partners, swap gender and identity with ease.
Gabriel Akuwudike, Patrick Knowles, Isabella Laughland, Bianca Stephens, Lizzy Watts and Tilda Wickham deliver confident and sympathetic performances brilliantly.
Director Guy Jones is to be commended for garnering such excellence from his team. Perhaps Either is Dangerous Liaisons for the millennial generation? Truly excellent.
Until October 26
020 7722 9301