Search

Theatre review: Keepsake at the Old Red Lion Theatre Pub

PUBLISHED: 15:06 15 January 2014 | UPDATED: 15:08 15 January 2014

Lou Broadbent as Samara and Dilek Rose as Abra in Keepsake at the Old Red Lion

Lou Broadbent as Samara and Dilek Rose as Abra in Keepsake at the Old Red Lion

Archant

The kitchen, the heart of the home so still and lived in, is the perfect setting for this multilayered, multi-themed melodrama.

Written by American playwright Gregory Beam, and directed by Sean Martin, Keepsake is the first outing for the script and for the theatre company, Free Trade Productions, and neither disappoint.

Set in a small American town, two sisters are reunited at the family home in Massachusetts following the suicide of their father. Time has turned them into strangers but they are bound by a familiarity at once easy and comic but with a hint of old tensions rising up to be acknowledged.

Lou Broadbent, as the free spirited Samara carries the first half, along with her sister Abra, played by Dilek Rose who slowly and painfully opens up, so that nothing is what it at first seems. Doubling her role as the mother, Rose enhances the cultural differences that course through the veins of the story.

Messages left on the answer machine and the lights dimming to capture flashbacks into the family history and the father’s descent into mental illness explain the present moment in ways unimaginable by the end of the first half.

By the second half, the action accelerates, possibly a little too fast as the themes of mental health, alcoholism, religion, sexual violence, family duty, and the total dysfunction of modern society comes to the fore in a thrilling climax.

Keepsake is full of cultural and political references, of family issues that are common to us all. With strong performances from a small cast, it is a positive first outing for this new theatre company.

Until January 25th

****

Latest Islington Entertainment Stories

Wed, 16:46

Following the success of their Haggerston and Seven Dials venues, Chick ‘n’ Sours bring a fresh new menu to their latest restaurant in Islington.

Wed, 15:58

This Monday, a pop-up record and book store aiming to ‘explore the positive connection between mental health and the arts’ will open in Stoke Newington for a one week stay.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Some of Hackney and Islington’s most popular eateries have joined forces with DesignMyNight.com – a nightlife discovery website – to stage a weekender dedicated to brunch in all its glory.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Born and raised in Islington, the revered music journalist Barry Cain is also a real talent when it comes to fiction writing. His first novel – The Types of Wrath – is available now.

PROMOTED CONTENT

Fostering older teenagers means giving them the skills for life as an adult. Here, a supportive lodgings carer with Islington Council and young adult who has left care share their stories

Newsletter Sign Up

Islington Gazette twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read entertainment

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now