H how should you behave when your mother has just died? There should be a guide to sudden death etiquette, suggests one of the sisters preparing for their mother's funeral.s the play by Shelagh Stephenson. This manual probably wouldn't advise an immediate shag, laughter, or getting high. Finding yourself in the room of the recently deceased deceased, it is equally indecent to dress up in your clothes, play with your breast pump or kiss your sister's husband.
Such transgressions make Stephenson's play, performed at the theater where it premiered 25 years ago, to sound like a farce. But he precariously balances tumultuous humor and pathos as he explores how we perceive our parents; how our lasting impression of them can be fixed at such a young age, changing only gradually over time; and how long it takes for children to see their own lives through their parents' eyes.
Director Alice Hamilton's last production at this address was a cover of tendue data The Dumb Waiter , whose hidden depths contrast sharply with The Memory of Water where so much is on the surface. The characters openly discuss the nature of memory as specific incidents from their childhood are exchanged, distorted, or hijacked. How did the family cat die? Each sister has a different answer.
The title refers to the concept that pure water can "remember" an essence of the substances that s 'are dissolved there. Aquatic imagery duly crosses the room: it's snowing when Teresa (Lucy Black), Mary (Laura Rogers) and C atherine (Carolina Main) arrive at their mother Vi, who overlooks an overwhelming sea. "This will eventually take home, " says Vi (Lizzy McInnerny), appearing in front of Mary in the premiere of a handful of sequels.ences of dreams which are the highlight of the room and leave you wanting the couple to talk more.
Set designer Anna Reid and lighting designer Johanna Town practically submerges Vi's bedroom in shades of aquarium green, with shell-shaped light fixtures. The bedroom
However, much of it the humor of the play seems frozenin time too, with flat routines on vitamin fashions, leaves on train tracks, and colon irrigation. Although the dope and whiskey are circulating, the comedy never reaches such heights and the sisters' jokes and snips don't always sting as they should.
Nonetheless, the bond and the changing dynamic between the women is handled well, as is the scene in which Teresa and her salesman husband, Frank (Kulvinder Ghir), bicker over how they announced each other through hearts. lonely. Adam James is good as Mary's affably baffled and already married boyfriend and McInnerny is superb as Vi, reinforced in her bitterness and frustration as she contrasts her own life with the opportunities of her offspring. It is the melancholy of the play that lingers in memory rather than the comedy.