THEATRE Theatre Reviews Blue/Orange Crucible Sheffield UK REVIEWS


Crucible Theatre

Modern ethics

The play Blue/Orange is described as a psychological thriller written by Joe Penhall. The performance begins in mid consultation between the psychiatric junior doctor, Bruce, played by Shaun Evans and his mentally ill patient, Christopher, played by Jimmy Akingbola. Jimmy Akingbola delivers a comical, yet compelling performance. His character is so mad that he believes oranges are blue. Bruce, the junior doctor has become too involved in this case and feels he must do more for Christopher, but comes up against the boundaries of the NHS. Robert, the senior consultant, played by Roger Lloyd Pack, who has little enthusiasm for his work and has become cynical and arrogant throughout his long career, enforces these strict rules.

Throughout the play I was deciding who was right and who was wrong. The costumes reflected this as Bruce was initially dressed all in black but in part two he is suited in black and white and vice versa for Robert. The set, designed by Paul Willis, is grey and uncluttered, with the backdrop consisting of a grey wall with two doors. There are uninteresting square office chairs, a square coffee table and a fluorescent blue light borders the also square stage. In fact the whole set is straight and symmetrical except for a bowl of oranges on the coffee table maybe reflecting a rebellion to the inflexible protocols set out in the NHS rule book. The clever use of lighting by lighting director Paul Keogan produces atmosphere on the predominantly grey stage.

The large square stage particularly suits the Crucible Theatre, as, under the direction of Kathy Burke, all the actors are clearly visible from all angles. The swift, sharp and humorous dialogue is delivered well by all three actors producing a very entertaining and enjoyable play. © SG

“Blue/Orange” is at the Crucible Sheffield from the 2nd to the 26th of February, 2005.

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