God’s Gift

Written by Arthur and Margi Ellison, Directed by Sylvie Gatrill
Unity Theatre, Friday 14th and Saturday 15th September 8.00pm
Matinee Saturday 15th September 4.30pm

Reviewed by Alison Cornmell

It’s been seventeen years since the Gibbon’s Family saw Gary, and after years of questions and conflict he is going to finally return.

The family are gathered on their mother’s Birthday waiting for their long lost brother and son to return. Their waiting is fraught with tension and speculation. What made Gary leave, was it a suspected infidelity, the shame of a sibling dabbling in homosexuality or something else? The audience as well as the family they are watching are eager to know what happened and the frustration is just as palpable in the auditorium as it is on the stage. This is a mystery that draws you in and makes you desperate for answers.

Family dynamics have been truly captured in this play, and produce a true to life snippet of a Liverpudlian family. And what really makes you care is the warmth of the family. Everything from the warmly lit set, to the Scouse humour that runs right through endears you to the family’s long-run trauma.

The dialogue was wonderfully realistic and executed perfectly. There were times when the dialogue even seemed ad-libbed, perhaps this was due to a fluffed line, whatever it was it worked and made the play even more enjoyable.

The actors all seemed comfortable in the roles they were playing and in the script they were acting. The age of a cast member did not quite fit with the ages of the character they were playing but this did not hinder the play. The star of the show for me was Andy played by Anthony Large who played Gary’s seventeen year old nephew. His comic ability and vulnerability stole the show despite his relatively small role in comparison to the other actors.

Basically it was brilliant, and despite some flaws I still left the theatre stunned. It was a well performed, enjoyable play that I will rave about for the next few weeks.

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Comment left by Cat Noble on 17th October, 2007 at 23:20
Actually, It was the actor Shaun Mason that played Andrew, the 17 year old. Just thought you may want to get the correct name for this review. Thanks, Cat

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