NICK Payne’s extraordinary play Constellations has its south west premiere at Yeovil’s Swan Theatre.
It’s an intense two-hander that observes a relationship from the road(s) less travelled. And the premise is that every single move we make is predetermined, and may be almost replicated in alternative universes.
Marianne and Roland meet – many times over, each time with a tiny difference in conversation.
Their relationship continues.
That’s what happens in Constellations, but it’s how the picture of their possibilities builds up that is the brilliance of the piece. It explores scientific theory, bees and human attraction.
Peter Fernandez directs with a rigour and subtlety, but the success of this play depends on astonishing performances by Roland (Oliver Delafeld) and Marianne (Elizabeth Lewis).
Monday night’s Swan audience was made up of members of the Labrador Rescue Trust, raising funds for their charity. There was just once when a man muttered “oh not again” the seventh or eighth time a short scene was replayed. For the rest of the 75 minutes there was not a sound from the audience, locked in rapt attention as the story unravelled.
Oliver Delafeld has proved again what a talented, versatile and natural actor he is. Elizabeth Lewis’s contribution was even more remarkable, joining the cast half way through the rehearsal period, just before Christmas.
The production is entered in the Somerset Fellowship of Drama Phoebe Rees contest. It’s hard to imagine that anything will beat it.
See Constellations at The Swan until Saturday 25th January.