Preview: Parallel Lines
20th-30th November 2013
When 15 year old student Steph makes a serious accusation about her teacher Simon both of their worlds seem ready to implode. As doubts from Steph’s mum and Simon’s wife grow how can they go on leading their normal lives?
In 2012 Katherine Chandler’s uncompromising Parallel Lines won the Wales Drama Award. A year on the script is now part of a perfect team with new writing fringe company Dirty Protest. This month the play will get its much deserved premier in Chapter Arts, directed by Catherine Paskell.
Last week the company were kind enough to let me sit in on rehearsal and what an exciting project to be working on. The play deals with so many of the hidden issues that still plague Welsh life; the underlying and ever increasing class divide, the fear of sexual harassment in the work place and the exposure of young people to inappropriate materials.
Despite the heavy topic the play is refreshingly humorous in places, really picking up on the Cardiff accent and sense of fun. The characters are recognisable and honest reflections of contemporary life and it’s hard not to feel your sympathy shift from one to the other as the tightly wound narrative slowly unfolds.
Each character is perfectly cast. Recent RADA graduate Rachel Redford is particularly convincing as confused teenager Steph and her chemistry with Jan Anderson is so touching, they really have formed a mother-daughter bond. Gareth Pierce and Lisa Diveney are perfectly tense as the professional couple under strain and it will be fascinating to see how their relationship develops or breaks down over the run.
When people complain that the theatre Scene in Wales isn’t exciting enough this is the perfect performance to prove them wrong. A small fringe company have taken on a huge challenge in this gripping and complex tale and they have certainly risen to the challenge!
For more information about the play and to buy tickets please visit: www.chapter.org
For more on Dirty Protest: www.dirtyprotesttheatre.co.uk