Last night Drew and I had the pleasure of attending Toyer at the Arts Theatre London on Great Newport Street. Â The theatre itself is modern and intimate, housing the London Cocktail Club â€“ a fantastic and sexy new addition to the nightlife in the Covent Garden area. Â I wasn’t sure what to expect from the show, a rumored thriller, but always enjoy a night at the theatre.
Under a full moon, quite late, we arrived at Maude’s swanky apartment. Â Waiting for her to arrive we listened to the coyotes bawl and bark. Â It was quite spooky waiting there for her…
Here’s what Drew had to say about the evening:
“William Schoularâ€™s adaption of Gardner McKayâ€™sÂ ToyerÂ is a tense psychological thriller featuring discomforting performances from Alice Krige and Al Weaver. In a medium filled all too often with over the top show tunes, dancing and mundane drama hoping to appeal to all ages,Â ToyerÂ is a welcome change from the stereotypical theatre experience.
The play begins a bit awkwardly with the already distraught female lead, Maude, taking the stage, but very quickly settles into proper audience engagement once her counterpart, Peter, knocks on her door. The performance keeps the audience at the appropriate level of discomfort by continuing to move back and forth between tension and respite as neither Maude nor the audience is certain if this man is the Toyer or just a misguided actor.
In the end,Â ToyerÂ leaves the audience considering the sexual tension between victim and victimizer as well as how performances like this are not the subject matter for children.”
I have to agree that the actors delivered an uncompromising performance and kept me quite on the edge of my seat until they finally left the stage. Â The audience may have wanted to offer a standing ovation, but the air was so thick as to hold us in our seats.