Quote Of The Day

"Victory goes to the player who makes the next-to-last mistake - Chessmaster Savielly Grigorievitch Tartakower (1887-1956)"

Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Silence @ Donmar Warehouse…. Review->

A couple of weeks ago Stuart and I went to see Silence at the Donmar Warehouse in London's glitzy West End.
Partition is trauma. I think we are all aware that often the British Empire’s solution to intractable problems in its most important colonies and mandates – namely Ireland, India and Palestine – was the divisive device of drawing boundaries which created local catastrophes.
This play, adapted from Kavita Puri’s book Partition Voices: Untold British Stories, is set in modern times telling the story of a journalist who interviews Indian and Pakistani people who experienced first-hand Imperial India partition in 1947. The stories are tragic, brutal and harrowing.
The weak part of the play is perhaps not the stories themselves, but the production. Being a verbatim piece set in many different locations the action jumps around too much and therefore is a little misguided - props are wheeled on and off repeatedly. A radio production could have used a soundscape far more effectively to invoke and amplify the powerful emotions behind the stories. The noise, the chaos, and the violence were all described rather than realised on stage. An audio landscape could have brought these to life far more effectively.
That said.  It was a powerful piece.  The British Empire has a lot to answer for.

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