Art House

In this world premiere from Rachael Coopes, Daniel Goldman's superb direction reveals a taut piece of drama that is utterly captivating to watch. With brilliantly detailed acting from the two actresses, there is nothing to criticize in this flawless production.The plot is both original and intriguing: brilliant painter Charlie fakes her death in order to secure fame and fortune and her younger sister Viva becomes her connection to the outside world. Whilst Charlie becomes increasingly imprisoned in her solitary room, Viva starts to realise her new-found power over her sibling and what follows is a struggle between freedom and control in a relationship that is both affectionate and stifling. Coopes has constructed a beautiful play, full of dramatic contours yet never selling out to the sensationalist. Her writing is hypnotic and poetic, yet also real and natural, and these factors remain in balance to each other for the entirety of the play. Goldman takes the script and infuses it with such vibrancy and colour it almost seems like one of Charlie's canvases springing to life. The use of space is excellent and conveys Charlie's sense of growing claustrophobia particularly well, whilst also giving plenty of room for the actresses to move around with ease. In between scenes, Charlie paints an imaginary picture on the fourth wall of the audience. In lesser hands this would be a time for the audience to shuffle about and break the mood; here, it is just as captivating as any of the scenes thanks to the rich characterisation and her expressive eyes. Goldman also employs several visual delights and the image of stars is one that will be ingrained on my mind for quite a while. Combined with a gorgeous soundtrack, it is a feast for all the senses.The shift in tone as the play progresses is particularly impressive and, as the silences increase, our interest peaks with the audience hanging on every utterance from the characters.This is a true masterclass in creating a superb Fringe production; and one that wouldn't look out of place in a London venue. Out of everything I have seen this year, it is the production that lingered with me the most, and everyone concerned deserves much recognition. Utterly superb.

Reviews by Damian Sandys

Since you’re here…

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You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
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Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
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The Blurb

“I gave you the world. You wanted to leave it. It was your wish.” When brilliant painter Charlie fakes her death for fame and fortune, younger sibling Viva becomes her only lifeline to the world outside... with terrifying consequences. Award-winning Tangram presents a revenge thriller from Australia’s brightest new playwright. www.tangramtheatre.co.uk.

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