The White Bike, ImpAct at Layard and Shelley Theatres

TAMARA von Werthern’s inventive and rivetting play The White Bike was created in London and was site-specific  for that audience.

When ImpAct Theatre’s director Patricia Richardson acquired permission to stage the first amateur production in Dorset, she worked closely with the writer,  and relocated the action to the Boscombe, Bournemouth, and Branksome area, familiar to local audiences, and none of the impact is lost.  Inspired by a true story, the play is performed in real time, flashback and anticipation, with Isabelle at its centre.

I would urge you to see this play, on at the Layard in Wimborne on 18th April, and at the Shelley in Boscombe on 30th April and 1st May, so I won’t reveal too much of the story.

Isabelle, in a stupendous performance by Tiffany Hannam-Daniels, is a young mother of Lily. She and her husband Henry are a loving, caring couple.

The whole thing is seen through Isabelle’s eyes, and what her eyes see is projected via video on the five discs that make up the set.  The pictures are of many familiar streets and shops, of the chines and sea off the Dorset coast.

Patricia Richardson’s famously subtle and multi-layered production technique is well fitted to this real-time style, and the six strong cast is well-rehearsed in the sometimes-stylised, sometimes-naturalistic movement by Claire Camble-Hutchins and Josephina Camble.

This is a play with a message, powerfully and thought-provokingly delivered.

Alongside the natural and absolutely believable core performance, with Hayden Ashhurst as Henry, Alicia Shore, Bethany Harris and Chris Stowe play all the supporting roles with a care and conviction that keeps the plays’ elements compelling and separate.

Sandra Trehane composed and played the music for the ImpAct production, whose only jarring note is the late-on reference to TFL.

It will make you look at things differently, and that was the intention.

Well done again to this exceptional company, and thanks to the playwright for turning an everyday tragedy into a magnetising drama.


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