Pros: Worth watching, if just to see some of the more complex scenes played out.
Cons: It could do with shortening by ten minutes or so.
New, international London-based theatre company Starbound Theatre brings its tale of grief and ghosts to the cosy Hen and Chickens Theatre Bar above an Angel boozer. The troupe – whose brand is focused on identity – tackles the topic with plenty of dramatic irony, and even a Roomba robot to boot.
Young Celeste, played with diligence by Paulina Brahm, tries to contact her recently deceased mother, but is instead haunted by the ghost of a woman named Evelyn. Played by Marta da Silva, Evelyn killed herself by jumping from the top of her office building, run by the micro-managing Robin – whose terse exterior and soft centre is played beautifully by Tammie Rhee. Celeste’s Mother, Theresa, is played in style by Sharon Drain, who is totally at ease in her role.
The group takes on the serious topic with a light touch. Nothing feels forced, the writing and direction is fresh, with comedy interspersed throughout to keep a rounded tone. Country fans will pick up on the play’s title, and the music genre is used to good effect throughout – several moments are given over to the soundtrack, with the actors left communicating the emotion through simple, but effective, tableaux. Ghosts and their associated tropes (such as papers flying about the room) are used with a knowing nod to the clichés.
A scene towards the middle of the play sees Celeste and Robin in conversation with each of their ghosts egging them on, though neither can see the other’s ghost. This allows for a fast-paced and complex exchange, which shows off the troupe’s attention to detail in a well-rehearsed scene.
Costumes are wonderfully juxtaposed to avoid the clichés. The ghosts are decked out in full 70s regalia, complete with white patent platform boots, whilst their live-and-kicking counterparts are draped in ethereal white garb. A pleasant departure from what could have easily been a lazy wardrobe choice.
Certainly one to keep in mind if you’re an Angel local on the lookout for some supernatural storytelling.
Writen By: Jessica Moss
Directed By: Yuqun Fan
Produced By: Rebecca Dilg
Booking until: 29th September 2018
Booking link: https://www.unrestrictedview.co.uk/events/i-will-miss-you-when-youre-gone/