A very exciting debut show from a company I look forward to following in the future
The structure of the piece is as knotted as the relationships it tracks, jumping back and forth across a five-year period but revolving around the group's annual Christmas gathering. Fuelled by alcohol and caffeine, this messy network of drunken hook-ups and love polygons is slowly revealed to us, piece by piece, with each blemish and misinterpretation.
Written by Emily Layton and directed by her and Miranda Slade, each layer of the story is carefully managed to not become either too simple or too messy. It's confusing but engaging. The piece is embedded in the world of being a 20-something today; the struggle of entry-level jobs, the fear of commitment and the refusal to grow up and move on into adulthood.
The set and props are packed in and out of cardboard boxes, just as the cast throw on or remove crumpled shirts and second-hand knitwear, the transitory nature of their lives beautifully matching their temporary flings and turbulent friendships. The piece needs work to add clarity and definition to the frequent scene changes, which are currently matching the messiness of the narrative a little too well.
It also needs to better signpost when each scene is taking place. But the foundations of a very good play are here. The ensemble cast is strong and refreshingly natural, although perhaps a little too laid-back at times. Rosell Hirst is particularly captivating as Elle, whose relationship with someone she loves is torn apart.
This is a play I want to watch a second time, to help place the pieces in order and unravel the knotted storylines into sense. Two Thirds is a very exciting debut show from a company I look forward to following in the future; it has been stuck in my mind since I saw it.