Overlong play with little to say about contemporary life
This article is from 2011.
Dafydd James’s text deals with issues of home and relationships, of both blood and fraternity, as well as the responsibilities these bring. Thirty-something Welshman living in London returns home to Cardiff and hooks up with his old friends from the gay community. There follows a kind of Generation X jamboree of booze, drugs and sex, a little reminiscent of the early work of Mark Ravenhill. At the piece’s climax our protagonist seduces a boy, who it emerges is underage, by intoxicating him with booze, coke and poppers. The potential to give the play some edge and moral ambiguity, though, is lost when it emerges all he wants from the lad is a cuddle.
The problem here is that James’s overlong script belongs to an era when the practice of sexuality and out celebration was politically important to a gay community facing homophobia and intolerance, and even one of his characters points out that this time is long gone, rendering the play itself redundant on its own terms. Despite a couple of nice high-camp set pieces, and a couple of good performances, the lumpy poetry and sentimental moralising has very little to say to contemporary life, gay or straight.
St George’s West, 225 7001, until 28 Aug, 11.45am, £10 (£8).