Brutal. Much like its subject matter, Patrick Marber’s play Closer, is a turbulent spectacle of the utter mediocrity and predictability of humanity.
Presented by Bathroom Floor Productions and directed by the multi-talented Scott Major, this most recent production performed at Prahran’s Chapel off Chapel, is a bitterly honest account of love, lust and the lies we tell ourselves to survive.
A bare set left an abundance of space for Marber’s text to take center stage as the four-part cast played their roles with respect and honesty. Revolving around the interweaving romantic lives of Dan (Major), Larry (Leslie Simpson), Anna (Claudia Greenstone) and Alice (Alinta Chidzey) the talented cast are rarely off stage as they are both drawn to and repulsed by each other.
Major brought a prudishness to the role that conflicted with his lustful motives and added another layer of intrigue to the character, while Simpson was so convincingly charming that you cannot be prepared for the brutality of his words.
Closer is a difficult play to watch. Not because it is a bad play, far from it. Closer is “too close,” and at times far too real. The subject matter, explicit script and yet complete normality of the characters challenges the audience, for there are elements of all of us reflected within these flawed and at times desperate characters.
Anna is a difficult character to like. Her abrupt nature and own moral questioning is played to perfection by Greenstone, who never falls into the trap of making the audience pity Anna.
Chidzey is completely charming as Alice, the wayward waif who only wants to be loved. Alice is perhaps the most intriguing character of all. Her profession contradicts her own desire and at the same time feeds into it, offering her love on a pedestal but always at arms reach.
There is not a moment, word or action within Closer that is wasted. Major’s production is a carefully cultivated project that taps into the inner psyche of human nature and exposes the desire, the passion and the burning selfishness that drives through all rational thought.
Not for the faint-hearted or easily offended, Closer is brilliant. Challenging, beautiful, and with a script that will imprint its way into your brain.
Bathroom Floor Productions presents
by Patrick Marber
Director Scott Major
Venue: Chapel off Chapel, Prahran VIC
Dates: 14 February - 2 March
Times: Tuesday – Saturday 7:30pm, Sunday 5:00pm
Tickets: $32.50 Full, $25 Conc. & Group 10+, $15 Preview (+ Transaction Fee)