Browse reviews

Edinburgh Fringe 2016


White Slate Theatre

Genre: Drama, Fringe Theatre, Short Plays, Theatre

Venue: Underbelly Cowgate


Low Down

This is all about a fine romance that did not end well. There are hints of stalking and hints at things that ended in ways that left both unsatisfied. It leads to the photographer, Isaac, going in search of Sophie, his muse who is now a nurse. It may have taken him years to find her but we now have the confrontation of feelings, a desperate return to the bedroom and another ending that may just be the end of it all.


This was a play that delivers the claustrophobic feelings of a relationship that may never have found its way never mind a pathway to follow. We are introduced to Sophie entering her flat before Isaac arrives and the nervousness Sophie displays makes this all too obvious – he is unwelcome. As the story unfolds, of their relationship going from the first flush to her feeling objectified and over photographed they end up outside and her and him now being snapped by his lens. The inevitability of trying to rekindle their physical relationship is shattered as once again he picks up his camera and her throwing him out feels like she has finally reached a point where her decision was made all those years earlier.

I saw White Slate a couple of years ago and loved their work. Like their previous offering, this is another play about a relationship that has at its heart, disturbing tendencies. The intensity that I saw two years ago has not completely gone but it has relaxed a little. It shows a company that is far more confident within itself and Captured really does benefit from that more centred and relaxed approach.

The set is very good. It has cut aways and screens for projections which are well used and at the beginning you start by worrying about sight lines but by the end realise not just that you shouldn’t have worried but, silly fool, they were all there for a reason.

The projections are excellent and particularly the photographs from their impromptu session outside show this company bringing theatricality into the piece with confidence – another development from two years ago. Both actors inhabit the set and allow each other the opportunity to grow and manipulate each other in a way that is both engaging and challenging. The very nature of our closest relationships are not viscerally examined nor are they contemptuously exposed but peeled back by a script that gives both actors sufficient opportunity to become and inhabit the experience they are now sharing with us.

Once again White Slate have produced a major piece of theatre on what is probably a shoe string. It shows that they are a serious players of serious theatre and deserve to move on now as they have, to me at least, proved and earned their spurs. Who knows what the future holds but it’s bright and suddenly white…