SPECIAL REVIEW: That Face, Stagecraft Theatre, Wellington. April 2011
Performed by Stagecraft Theatre, Wellington
Directed by Iona Anderson
Season: 6-16 April 2011
Reviewed by: Ewen Coleman
Review Date: 13 April 2011
Dysfunctional families appear to be in vogue at the moment as subject matter for plays but few can be as dysfunctional as that of Martha and Hugh and their children in Polly Stenhams’s play That Face.
Hugh (John Chalmers) has decided to opt out of this well-to-do middle class family and is now living in Hong Kong with a new wife. He has put his rebellious daughter Mia (Annabel Harris) into a posh boarding school, pays for his son Henry (Dan Connolly) to attend art school and checks his pill-popping, alcoholic wife Martha (Petra Donnison) into a clinic. But then late one night in the boarding school dorm Mia and her friend Izzy (Melissa Phillips) over do it with an initiation ceremony on their classmate Alice (Julia McEnteer) and Mia is suspended. This causes Hugh to return home only to find that not only is Mia in trouble but Henry has dropped out of art school to care for Martha who is worse than ever and that the two have developed what looks like an unhealthy relationship.
When Hugh tries to sort things out, each family member has their own agenda to keep things the way they are thus causing friction and furore of unprecedented intensity.
Written when the playwright was only 19 years old, That Face is a raw and powerful piece of writing that won numerous awards when first seen at the Royal Court Theatre in 2007...
The entire review can be found here: http://wellington.theatrenewzealand.c...atFace.pdf