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Sunday, 31 March 2019

REVIEW: Half Me, Half You at the Tristan Bates Theatre

With our current political climate garnering unease and some backwards steps in regards to racism and homophobia, it seems that ‘Half Me, Half You’ – a play with the tagline What if you were black, gay and a woman in America right now– is ideal for now. The play takes place in two different time zones – with a confrontation between married couple Jess and Meredith in 2017, and a confrontation in 2033 between Meredith and mixed race teenager Maya.

Whilst the idea of the play is bang on the money for our time, the execution however was less so. For me Liane Grant’s writing dragged, often repeating the same argument over and over again each act, leaving a scene repetitive and all on one note. Her exciting and fresh ideas towards a second American Civil War felt underwritten, whereas whilst she has very important and valid points on adoption, IVF and white supremacy through the play, they soon became over exhausted and lost impact. Also, whilst the play is naturalistic in delivery, the exposition felt clunky and the writing left the audience struggling to understand what was going on. Plus when the characters keep crying again and again in the same scene even the most experienced actors would struggle to keep the emotion real and raw.
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