Revisiting Shaun Kitchener’s All That after seeing it for the first time back in June 2017, it is very clear that the play has been given a ‘tidy up’, a fresh coat of paint and is now an even more cohesive production. The four actors – Shaun playing Taylor, pictured above, Chris Cohen playing Parker, Prince Plockley as Jamie and a very watchable Elliot Hadley as Riley – have a firm grip on the complexities of Kitchener’s story about two gay couples living in a house together.
Riley and Taylor own a house in Zone 2 and to make ends meet let out their spare room to Jamie and Parker and then via very clever and fluid direction by James Callas Ball, the fun and games begin with the emphasis firmly on the build up in the sexual tension between the four men. In this production the dropping of the only female character, in my opinion, has also made for a more realistic experience.
The comedy element has also been ramped up with Mr Kitchener giving himself some of the best lines, but he is not to be chastised for that; he is a strong wordsmith and clearly knows his stuff when it comes to creating believable and plausible dialogue giving in turn his three fellow cast members good monologues as well.
All That looks at the damage that can be done when testing fidelity; the keeping of secrets or telling of them. This is a thoughtful look at modern gay living where the choice to have an ‘open’ or monogamous relationship is explored in great detail. Very interesting theatre.