An Intervention

Juicy Lime Productions presents Mike Bartlett’s 2014 play An Intervention, as part of the Brighton Fringe at the Sweet Room, Old Steine

Ranges from the vitriolic and venomous to the light-hearted and comical

Two characters, identified in the script only as A and B, have known each other for many years and have become something like soulmates. Given their nomenclature, they can be seen not only as two sides of a friendship, but also as opposing parties in the debate about the rights and wrongs of invading another country and the grounds on which it might be justified.

While A, played by Sally C Davies, goes on a protest march with the expectation that her mate, B, played by Brad Glen might be similarly inclined, it transpires that he actually supports the war, and stayed at home to watch it on television. The ensuing banter between them ranges from the vitriolic and venomous to the light-hearted and comical. In need of more ammunition to hurl at each other, A cannot resist bringing up the matter of B’s new girlfriend, the allegedly dreadful Hannah who, according to A, is loathed by all of B’s friends. B, meanwhile, with some justification, given the evidence before us, doesn’t flinch from pointing out that A is probably becoming far too reliant on the bottle. As she slides towards depression and he evaluates his relationship they ultimately find themselves in both a personal and physical position neither had anticipated.

Act one is predominantly loud and angry, with Davies shouting her head off around the stage in something of a monotone rant and Glen, playing a more subdued character, doing his best to compete. Things calm down a little thereafter and there are moments of sensitivity and mutual understanding, but the underlying tensions remain and the tragi-comic finale stretches the bounds of credibility.

By that stage one might wonder what all the fuss was about, but it’s probably reflective of the mess that some people get themselves into when rationality flies out of the window and emotions and alcohol take over.

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Performances

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The Blurb

From award-winning writer Mike Bartlett comes a touching, funny, sharp, and sometimes dark play about what happens when you start to hate your best friend. One went on a protest and got fabulously drunk. The other stayed at home and thought about the future, but was anyone really listening to either of them, and did they even listen to each other? Starring Sally C. Davis (5 stars Contractions 2016) & Brad Glen (Hamlet 2018), Directed by Ralf Higgins.

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