BWW Review: THE BROTHERS SIZE, Young Vic
After a time spent apart, two brothers reunite in an attempt to understand one another. Charting their differences and uniting via their similarities, they laugh, dance, sing, fight, and slowly begin to recognise that everything they once knew has forever changed.
Themes of masculinity, race and sexuality are all interrogated in Tarell Alvin McCraney's epic fable. His writing is ritualistic, oozing with culture, and contains within it an absolute truth. Is it verse? Is it prose? I'm not sure, however its curious composition is nothing short of satisfying.
Bijan Sheibani's production leaves you winded with an assortment of overwhelming emotions. The 80-minute spectacle offers so much, and all of the varying devices have been weaved together meticulously, so that even though you're full, you still want more.
The performances are superb, and each actor works to support the plays overall goal. They are an ensemble, and manipulate themselves animalistically, being totally immersed in their bodies. Manuel Pinheiro underscores this movement via live sound in the form of a drum kit. The use of percussion adds brilliantly to the primal atmosphere.
However, it is not only the actors' use of their physicality that is impressive, but their vocal power is as equally brilliant. When delivering text they speak with a high level of conviction, which results in many powerful moments, and it's wonderful to see actors totally connected to the script.
Originally premiering at the Young Vic in 2007, it is no surprise as to why this production has been brought back. It is an enthralling and deeply moving portrayal of brotherhood, and its messages will resonate with a lot of people.
Feeling constantly alive in terms of energy and pace, the play is joyful, harrowing and humorous. It's a story of connection and co-dependency, and the different approaches in which it accesses this makes the overall event a thrilling theatrical experience.
Photo credit: Marc Brenner