WHAT I DO FOR YOU
What I Do For You explores relatable themes of family, finances, unemployment and loss while gaining dramatic impact from storylines of deceit and murder. The gripping tale instantly grasps the audience who are required to walk through the stage in order to reach their seats and are therefore instantly giving themselves to theatre. This clever dramatic device was enhanced through them looking on a naturalistic comedic setting to help keep them engaged before the play had begun. This potentially helped to encourage the emotional involvement required for this story to be moving.
The introduction of the brother characters was smoothly and clearly done through script writing but the introduction of Penny was a little confusing due to the description of Alfie’s character previously. This made the characterisation appear more scripted than embodied, and could have been achieved through a brief conversation introducing her. This confusion lead to a lack of sympathy for her which could have added a new depth to the play which then would have dealt with moral conflict. While dealing with deep and complex themes, the script also provided comedic relief which was a good creative decision for it left an impact on the audience but also meant that they could leave the theatre appreciating what they had seen as opposed to weighed down by saddening themes. The only other thing the script could have benefited from were longer pauses to allow powerful lines to sit with the audience for longer, strengthening their impact and emotional connection to the characters.
The choice of a naturalistic style worked well for it helped make early themes such as unemployment more relatable for the audience and therefore made the play more engaging. This approach made the funeral scene particularly powerful and the minimalistic nature of it evoked a lot of sympathetic emotions in the audience. However, this illusion was ruined through an artificial doorbell and knock. If a naturalistic theme had been maintained a perfect world would have been created.
Overall, a deeply moving and well-crafted script.
**** – Stars