Vincent River at Trafalgar Studios: Press night review by Stephen Vowles

This incredible drama is one of the best two handers I’ve seen this season with Louise Jameson as Anita and Thomas Mahy as Davy delivering gut-wrenching, strong, sensational and brutally honest performances that make for very powerful theatre. The onstage chemistry between the two of them is astounding via Robert Chevara’s very emphatic direction.

This look at handling death – after the savage and frenzied homophobic attack of Anita’s gay son Vincent which resulted in his murder – simmers until an explosive last five minutes when human emotions are brought to a boiling point. Both actors embrace their characters with such commitment to their roles, this is a masterclass in fine acting.

In Philip Ridley’s extraordinary script, the level of banter is well constructed, almost bordering on a battle of the sexes – each wanting to get from each other their own sense of closure of previous events. The way Ridley gets the two to communicate  with each other also includes marvellous light comedy moments inspired by social differences, class and values.

This is a play full of passion. The fluidity of the piece is staggering and explores beautifully the need for acceptance and confession; and coming to terms with what life can throw at you. A magnificent absorbing and energetic drama that should be seen by as many people as possible. Gripping stuff! 


Photos by Scott Rylander

Vincent River runs to 22nd June at Trafalgar Studios 2, 14 Whitehall, Westminster, London SW1A 2DY. Box office: 0844 871 7632

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