Your Ever Loving (4 stars)

Your Ever Loving

credit: Andreas Lambis

Timely political theatre about the Guildford Four and the rights of terror suspects

Your Ever Loving by Martin McNamara is based on the true story of Paul Hill, one of the Guildford Four who were accused of planting IRA bombs in pubs and wrongly imprisoned for 15 years. It uses letters written by Hill to his family during his incarceration and now stored in a university archive.

Just two characters and a lot of creative staging bring the story to life and while the pace is a bit racy at first, it settles quickly. Stefan McCusker is stoic as Hill and James Elmes demonstrates versatility playing guards, prisoners, the justice secretary, judge, jury, and Margaret Thatcher, the manic glint in his eye portraying sadistic screws and wild inmates.

The play doesn't shy away from the violence of prison, assaulting the senses with smashes and screams, and it interrogates the crucial question that cast doubt on their innocence: why the Guildford Four signed full confessions. Music neatly frames the passing of time as Hill listens to the Beatles and Christmas number ones from various cells.

It's hard to distil 15 years into an hour but wanting more is a testament to this story's resonance. With the rights of terror suspects again in question, it is a timely piece of political theatre.

Underbelly Cowgate, until 20 Aug, noon, £10--£11 (£9--£10).

Your Ever Loving

  • 4 stars

Theatre N16 / Eastlake Productions Irish bombs. Crowded English pubs. Many dead. The terrifying true story of Paul Hill and the Guildford Four. 'Convictions had to be got' (Home Secretary). Forget Making a Murderer… ★★★★★ (TheBasicTheatreReview.blogspot.co.uk). ★★★★ (LondonBoxOffice.co.uk). ★★★…

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