When producing theatre, Provocation promise to deliver “vivid & witty new writing” and in that respect, this show does not disappoint. An Act of Twisting is a deep exploration of moral boundaries, keeping the audience both entertained and horrified throughout. Written by Director of the Rondo theatre, Ian McGlynn and directed by last year’s Intern Director Hannah Drake, the show was a sharp, and often painful, social commentary on the atrocities humans can inflict on one another.
The first half started a little tentatively, but by the second half the actors had found their stride and the performance came alive. Some beautifully written lines and a more in-depth knowledge of the three younger characters, taking them from stereotypes to real people, followed the interval with a renewed sense of pace and energy.
The most comfortable in her part was Lizzy Dive, who played the matronly figure to the three younger characters. She carried the show with great presence and comic timing. The three rookies, played by Annette Chown, Kirsty Cox and Laura Fautley were convincing in the roles of Kate, Hannah and Lara.
The set, designed by Natalie Remington, was beautifully simple. A painted hexagonal shape on the floor dictated a small acting space and only one exit was used throughout, highlighting the entrapment of both prisoner and staff. Luke John Emmett’s atmospheric lighting and sound design complemented the close and oppressive set perfectly. The highlight of the show was the clever use of music. At times it evoked laughter, shock and sadness, all of which complimented the action perfectly.
It was a shame that more people didn’t brave the March weather; it was a slick performance and they deserved a larger audience, as it was obvious everyone had worked very hard to create such a show. In all, a successful opening night.
The show runs until Saturday at the Rondo Theatre and then has a run at the Bierkeller in Bristol from March 31 until 4 April.