In Love and Warcraft at Theatre N16CultureTheatre
Modern theatre cannot escape technology’s enormous influence on society. The already complex interactions between people are now further blurred by the overwhelming amount of ambiguous virtual information getting in the way of real communication. In Love and Warcraft is the latest production to explore people’s diminishing ability to build healthy bonds as they spend more and more time in front of a screen.
Evie is an avid video game player with a flair for words. When she isn’t engaged in virtual battles on Warcraft, she composes amorous letters, emails and text messages for people wanting to resolve problems with their partners or seduce their love interests. Totally inexperienced in romance herself, Evie fears sex and is content with a virtual, long-distance relationship with Ryan, a fellow Warcraft gamer.
Things get complicated when she meets an interesting guy – in person. She is unable to hide her insecurities and a string of awkward exchanges ensues. Spurred on by her nymphomaniac housemate Kitty, Evie is torn between the virtual world where she is confident and experienced, and real life, which is frightening, but strongly enticing.
Amusing, timely and tragicomic, the play may not delve very deep into the issues it highlights, but it does offer an effective sketch of what it’s like to navigate through relationships in modern times. The cast does a wonderful job of delivering the snappy dialogues and also transmitting the deep-seated anxiety that characterises every interaction.
The set is basic and the audience sits on either side of the intimate performance space, as if looking through invisible walls. The frequent and rapid changes of costumes help keep up the sharp tempo and when, towards the end, the characters must resort to extreme measures to resolve an issue, they plunge into another dimension, allowing the comedy factor to take over.
In Love and Warcraft is thoroughly enjoyable and well acted, but it is a mere lighthearted introduction to a series of issues worth exploring in greater depth.
Photo: Jade Thomas
In Love and Warcraft is at Theatre N16 from 6th until 17th November 2016, for further information or to book visit here.