Review: I Hope It’s Not Raining In London

2 years ago
Edwin Johnson

Uncomfortably brilliant. I would love to go every night if I could.

I Hope It’s Not Raining In London is a contemporary production which explores people’s identities, perceived realities, and the effects of trauma on individuals. The story follows two strangers, trapped in a mysterious room with no memory of their past; a strong premise for a minimal but powerful production. Their memories are gradually return to them as items are delivered to the stage in boxes – and with each memory comes a painful exploration of events from each character’s life outside the room. Intrigue regarding the room and the two character’s pasts grows until a confronting climax is reached.

With detailed and brilliant direction, a strong production team, and excellent delivery from the actors, this play cleverly explores the conflict between two differing personalities and their approaches to dealing with trauma. ‘One’ character remains somewhat shy and timid throughout, while ‘the Other’ is far more outgoing. Both however are deeply broken. The two main characters of the story remain nameless throughout the entire play, which not only contributes to the intrigue but also allows the audience to view the characters as personalities, not individuals. The behaviour of ‘the One’ and ‘the Other’ feel very real, with waves of anxiety, fear and concern interrupted by rather beautiful moments of compassion and friendship. Flashbacks to memories outside the room are also immaculately delivered with heart breaking precision.

A unique approach to I Hope It’s Not Raining In London is having the four cast members take the stage from start to end, rotating each of their characters from night to night. This means that for each performance there is a new set of characters, and thus new interactions and behaviours can be explored. In this instance I was lucky enough to witness Zoe Walker and Cassie Hamilton deliver the lead roles, who delivered it with aplomb.

Overall, this was an thoroughly enjoyable and unforgettable evening. I was captivated the entire time and cannot fault any aspect of the work. Absolutely worth going to see, if you get the opportunity. I will be certainly watching again with new characters.

This production is not easy viewing. Adventurers beware.

I Hope It’s Not Raining In London is playing from July 8 – 13 at the Butterfly Club, July 19 at Cube 37 in the Frankston Arts Centre, and July 20 at Burrinja Cultural Centre.

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