Afterglow at the Southwark Playhouse: Press night review by Stephen Vowles

Under the awesome, controlled and very precise direction of Tom O’Brien and with three intoxicating performances by Jesse Fox as Darius, Sean Hart as Josh and finally Danny Mahoney playing Alex, S. Asher Gelman’s play Afterglow exploded onto the Southwark Playhouse stage last night receiving its UK premiere. After the opening scene of full nudity, simulated penetrative sex and the guys reaching orgasm, the tagline for the play on the poster – The Climax is just the Beginning – could not have been more apt. 

The play pulsates with a throbbing energy supported by a hard trance soundtrack that compels the audience to take notice. The three actors are sensational: dynamic, driven by a passion, equally sharing the stage and manoeuvring the set with a masculine force that is compelling to witness.

Gelman’s skill as a writer is superb with themes running through the play of the quest to find the perfect mate, the effects of jealousy in an open relationship, playing by the rules, breaking those rules, the power of adoration and manipulation, knowing your self worth, that keeping a secret can be damaging and finally to be very careful of what you wish for. 

Afterglow is an emotional rollercoaster beautifully played out and offers a deep look and an informed dissection of being in an open gay relationship. A perfect three way. Totally captivating; modern theatre at it’s very enthralling best. A must see this season.

Photos by Darren Bell


Afterglow at the Southwark Playhouse runs to Saturday 20th July at Southwark Playhouse, 77-85 Newington Causeway London SE1 6BD. Box office: 020 7407 0234  

To Top