Rapture at Etcetera Theatre
Is the human race expendable? This is the question on which lay the foundations of Rubber Duck Theatre’s deliriously dark, capricious play Rapture, where the human race have, literally, placed their lives in the hands of a corrupt government.
Directed and scripted by Lisa McMullin, Rapture is an interesting and articulate look at an Orwellian Britain: a world of PS13’s, zero benefits and planning permission for procreation. The play is set in the near future, at a time where medical advances have overpopulated the country and unemployment is on a rise, to which the government propose a kind of cull. One in four must go, which leaves Ossie (Darryl Oakley), Kameron (Rik Grayson), Cleo (Jennifer Tyler) and Whitney (Olivia Quinn) to prove their worth to both society and each other.
The actors are delightful in their portrayals of four unsuspecting victims, particularly Ryan Kennedy whose immense talent is realised in the role of the Auditor. This being said, the characters are not fully developed, making it hard to connect with their sense of injustice, perhaps a smaller cast would have led way to a more poignant and thoughtful piece. The writing is jam-packed with contextual references and consistent scene-setting that, although imaginative, busies the narrative with unnecessary baggage and alienates the audience, to the extent that its theatrical intent of drawing you into its dystopian world is lost.
However, the production has an intelligent script, where the darker moments are further enhanced with equally uncomfortable, sinister humour. Though it is a fictional piece, Rapture is also quite realistic and one can see the relevance of its content, especially when performed in the current political climate, where we are faced with a decision that could change our future dramatically.
This is certainly theatre that has a sense of purpose and reminds us why smaller productions should receive more credit for the inventive work they are creating.
Rapture is on at Etcetera Theatre from 7th until 26th June, for more information or to book please click here.