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REVIEW: Invincible powers into Orange Tree Theatre
It is something of a meeting of minds when a woman who worships Karl Marx meets a man who worships his cat, Vince.
Torben Betts’ new play, Invincible, demonstrates the questions, and indeed farcical outcomes, this type of situation poses.
Emily (Laura Howard) and Oliver (Darren Strange) are a middle-class couple from London who have moved north so that their children can enjoy what Emily sees as a proper upbringing.
But fantasies of their children playing in the streets and leaving their front door unlocked soon fade as Emily fumes over the sort of people they share their street with.
When Alan (Daniel Copeland) and Dawn (Samantha Seager) come to visit, it is clear this will not be comfortable viewing.
Seager delivers a masterful performance throughout, balancing deadpan comic dialogue, bewildered facial expressions and sincerity in equal measure.
Director Ellie Jones knows these characters inside out and the links between scenes provide an insight into each character’s true and uninhibited personality.
Tensions soon flare as conversation turns to the armed forces, as Emily riles her neighbours with her extreme opinions.
Most will come away from Invincible trying - and probably failing - to do justice in describing the expertly-prolonged scene where Alan goes to fetch his paintings of his cat, Vince.
Adultery and Vince’s disappearance provide tears-in-your-eyes-laughing moments, leaving the audience squirming in their seats waiting to see if truths will out.
As this wonderful play progresses, we learn more about their pasts and the reason they are all the way they are.
All four actors do a fantastic job in gripping the audience’s attention and if a television show was this funny, it would be trending on Twitter by now.
Catch Invincible before it closes at the Orange Tree Theatre in Richmond on April 12. Visit orangetreetheatre.co.uk for more details.
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