Rust at Bush Theatre
Bush Theatre plays host to Rust, a sharp new show, well written and well performed.
The play tells the story of two unhappily married people who find happiness together. They rent a flat and meet there secretly every Monday for love and lust. Each scene is another glimpse at their affair and how it plays out. Nadia and Daniel try to define the rules of their relationship. And then redefine them. As time goes by their rules unravel and they worry that their secrets will too.
The writing is lovely. Kenny Emson’s dialogue is natural and compelling, while his characters are endearing. Both Nadia and Daniel are deep and well-crafted individuals who feel real and connected, and the relationship between them has been built wonderfully.
Aiding the script are the great performances from the two cast members, Claire Lams and Jon Foster. They manage to switch from happy-in-love to bursts of anger in a flash. Lams particularly stands out as Nadia, fiercely fun at times and just fierce at others.
The set design is simple yet works particularly nicely. A mass of pillows lie centre stage, making up the lovers’ bed. Director Eleanor Rhode makes good use of these props, having the performers interact with them in various ways to bring the bedroom to life.
While every element of the production is solid, it doesn’t really meet its promise of pushing “the boundaries of trust, love and lust to the limit”. Instead, it just about manages to comment on those themes. But is that necessarily a bad thing? What the piece loses in deep boundary-pushing thinking, it makes up for by being more accessible as a show. It becomes simply enjoyable to watch.
While Rust isn’t as cutting edge or thought-provoking as it would perhaps hope to be, it’s a decent, entertaining show that’s certainly worth the ticket price.
Photo: Helen Murray
Rust is at Bush Theatre from 1st July until 27th July 2019. For further information or to book visit the theatre’s website here.