Night Time

Fails to deliver any new insights on either fantasy or domestic violence and plays safe with theatrical convention

★★★
archive review (edinburgh) | Read in About 2 minutes
Published 03 Aug 2007
Held together by Lorne Campbell’s steady direction and four excellent performances, Night Time is far from typical Fringe theatre: it had a preview run and the Traverse’s professional support. Sadly, the show is weakened by a script that slips between naturalistic and symbolic.

Over the course of the night, protagonist Christina meets two very different men as she escapes her abusive husband. Although billed as ‘a hypnotic thriller’, Night Time only examines the consequences of Christina’s abuse, removing the "thrill" element. The dialogue is stilted in Harold Pinter-esque style. Male-female relationships are portrayed only as pitched battles and, indeed, the male characters are seen simply as mere foils for the lead character to play off. Also, a teasing suggestion that the events are all played out in Christina's imagination is one that is not, at any later point, explored and the questions it poses are neither answered nor, as it turns out, at all relevant.

As something of a consolation, Kananu Kirimi is magestic as Christina, convincing throughout her character's various mood-swings and investing her monologues with a thrilling pathos. Her scene with husband Bowman (Benny Young) is a tense battle of wills, their age-gap making it appear more like a conflict between teacher and pupil rather than of equals.

Yet Night Time fails to deliver any new insights on either fantasy or domestic violence and plays safe with theatrical convention.