Amygdala at the Print RoomCultureTheatre
Better known on stage, actress Geraldine Alexander’s first play is a brief yet powerful portrayal of just three characters’ lives as they all struggle with the their own predetermined ideas of the truth and memory.
The production is dotted with a series of powerful monologues delivered by Jasper Britton, Hermione Gulliford and Alex Lanipekun with a harmonious balance of complexity. Lanipekun’s character especially displays both unexpected vulnerability and a series of perfectly timed humorous one-liners, without being too familiar.
On the small, intimate stage, the plot switches between past and present with ease and good pace. The search is on for the truth ahead of the trial of Joshua James, and where polished lawyer Catherine (who is suffering from post-traumatic stress) is due to give her evidence. As Catherine loses herself to the young musician’s charm, their relationship falls victim to cliché and stereotype, eventually causing an accident that they both regret forever.
The play’s title refers to small nuclei in the brain responsible for many of our emotions including fear, pleasure and survival. Catherine’s “deep and dark” eyes are the key to unlocking the truth and play a clever vehicle in also moving the plot forward. Both physiatrist Simon and Joshua understand her emotions through her eyes and each searches for a different type of truth: Joshua needs to find freedom whilst Simon is looking for a pre-conceived reality.
The converted graphic design warehouse provides a fitting background to a somewhat raw but intense production. The characters are passionate without being too intimidating and the monologues conjure empathy without being too intense. Alexander achieves an extraordinary balance of love, emotional exploration, humour, and regret while delivering a wonderfully intimate piece of theatre.
Amygdala is on at The Print Room until 14th December 2013, for further information or to book visit here.
Watch the trailer for Amygdala here: