Theatre: The Distance

All photo’s courtesy of Sheffield Theatres

As some of you may know before I had a career change two years ago, I used to work in theatre.  For several years I worked as a lighting and stage engineer and even have a degree in drama.  However, since switching to publishing I have gotten behind on my theatre viewing.  I assumed I would go to the theatre more as an audience member since I no longer worked in that environment, but unfortunately for the most part this hasn’t really happened.  Recently I have made more of an effort and in the last month I’ve seen Farinelli and the King, Kinky Boots and Gypsy while I was in London.  So I was overjoyed when Sheffield Theatres contacted me to see if I wanted to go and review their latest show The Distance.

“I am asking you both, as my oldest, closest friends, to accept the decision I have made. And I am sorry if it’s difficult to accept. I can assure you, it has been difficult to make.
Good friends should be there for one another – no matter what. But when Bea returns home after five years abroad having made a bold choice about her life, old friends struggle to support her. Or even to understand. One night in Brighton, things threaten to slide into chaos…
A sharply funny play about motherhood and fatherhood; about keeping control and letting go.”
I’ll not beat around the bush, I really enjoyed this performance.  The thing that stood out to me the most was the writing.  The dialogue was fast paced and naturalistic; it really lent itself to the themes involved and made the humour authentic within the setting. It also made the relationships between the characters appear more genuine.  Throughout, it ebbed and flowed at appropriate times and was easy to follow and kept my attention fully.  It is a very female orientated play both in terms of cast and issues, creating some interesting points about what people expect from the different sexes, while never coming across as preachy.
The set was dynamic and put to great use, the action takes place in just two key locations but the scene change was a very clever use of the ‘in the round’ staging.

The play was a great mixture of comedy and emotion that juxtaposed each other perfectly. The serious subject matter was approached in a new way that made it relatable to most people.  The themes flow through every character in some way even if they didn’t realise it.  The story of one women is really reflective of them all.  There were some really great performances, especially from Charlotte Lucas.


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