Click here!


Theatre Review: La Maladie de la Mort ***

Ashling Findlay-Carroll reviews a 'problematic' production.

The style of the piece is established from the moment we enter: the actors warm-up or sit and wait, and technical staff stand casually chatting on stage before completing their final checks. The set is dominated by a large screen where the film will be viewed, and the stage space looks like a generic hotel, a corridor blandly decorated and a series of pale wooden doors to the bathroom, the corridor, another equally generic room. A sound booth sits downstage right, from which the narrator observes and comments, supposedly representing a female voice to provide a female perspective.

The attention to detail and level of technical skill in acting, directing and film work is evident, as the actors, crew, the camera and boom operators move in an intriguing choreography to create meticulously curated images, many of which are disturbing but not necessarily in the way that they were intended to be.

What is problematic is that we are still viewing this level of misogyny on stage. The programme notes claim that the play seeks to be a catalyst for change by presenting this disturbing story about male power and dominance, but there is little redemption. And yes (spoiler alert) the woman walks away in the end, but it does not feel like an empowered ending, more a sad confirmation that we still live in a world where women are mistreated, abused and taken advantage of daily.

Throughout the piece there is an ongoing, repetitive cycle of discomfort and disappointment, like a dull ache you can't get rid of. Perhaps this is our very own malady de la morte?

La Maladie de la Mort was part of this year’s Edinburgh International Festival programme. It’s run has ended.

Comments: 0 (Add)

To post a comment, you need to sign in or register. Forgotten password? Click here.

Find a show

Search the site

Find us on …

Find us on FacebookFollow us on TwitterFind us on YouTube