Mille Walton of The Courier reviews an impressive, yet harrowing, NUTS production of ‘The Pillowman’…
Martin McDonagh’s The Pillowman is by no means an easy production to pull off. Any play about child abuse, murder and depression is likely to present a whole host of issues, especially if it’s also meant to be a comedy, but NUTS put on a pretty good show.
Designed by Luke Robson, the set was hugely impressive and one of the production’s greatest strengths. The simply built interrogation room (the setting for the majority of the action) functioned as a blank canvas for writer, Katurian’s imagination as his horrific tales were re-enacted before the audience’s eyes. However, it was the acting that really stood out as exceptional. Dan Lockett made a tortured and complex Katurian, whilst Ruaidrhi Johnston gave an astonishing performance as Katurian’s deeply disturbed brother, Michael. The duo continued to captivate the audience throughout their long and heavy scenes aided by solid performances from James Heaford and David Gibson as detectives Ariel and Tupolski. Despite the cast’s efforts though, the piece lacked pace partly due to a few line hesitations here and there but mainly due to long, unchanging scenes which could have done with some lighting variation.
That said, it still made for an interesting, if not slightly harrowing, watch.