BWW Review: THINGS I KNOW TO BE TRUE, Lyric Hammersmith
Bob and Fran have worked for years to provide the best life possible for their four children. Now, all they want to do is sit back and relax; however the revelation of some home truths makes this task seem impossible. A tragic tale of attachment and co-dependency, exploring the complexities of one family's life, Frantic Assembly's critically acclaimed show is revived for a nationwide tour.
Frantic have used their unique way of storytelling to meticulously craft a production that is expertly timed, slick and sophisticated in its creation. The play contains a lot of aspects you've come to expect from their style of work; there are impressive lifts and holds, leans that seem to defy gravity and clever stage trickery that leaves you in awe.
It's unusual in its make-up; dialogue suddenly stops so that movement can take place, and this unpredictability adds to the pieces appeal. It's a testament to Frantic's methodology; moments that should be difficult are executed with ease. It's delicate, whilst at the same time feels dangerous. Each performer has a brilliant endurance and a clear enthusiasm for the work.
There is an electrifying chemistry between everyone, however it is Evan Stewart and Cate Hamer who stand out most, in their roles as the struggling parents. They effectively demonstrate the inner grief they feel at losing their children (to adulthood), and through their vibrant interaction you really get the idea of a marriage at breaking point.
All these parents want for their children is for them to be a better version of themselves. But there comes a point when their expectations don't match the reality; and this once seemingly perfect family is thrown into chaos.
Divorce, debauchery and other dangerous dealings are all present in Andrew Bovell's text. In Geordie Brookman and Scott Graham's co-production one thing is for sure; life is unpredictable, especially when there are so many people in the mix. You quickly realise that the things you know to be true is actually not that much.
Photo credit: Manuel Harlan