The Mancunion

Britain's biggest student newspaper

The Best/Worst Thing: UMDS

Four members of the Drama Society committee tell us the best thing they have seen in the last year.


Four members of the Drama Society committee tell us the best thing they have seen in the last year.

Izzy Lewis (Social Media/General Member): Replay @ Pleasance Courtyard, Edinburgh

I saw Nicola Wren’s one-woman show at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe having been sold it on the premise of, ‘you’ll cry your eyes out’, which I inevitably did. A totally new direction from DugOut Theatre, Replay is the story of a hard-working police officer confronting her unresolved issues regarding her brother’s early death.

The piece is simple and understated, there’s no big climactic moment, yet the effect it had on the audience was unlike anything I’ve ever experienced in the theatre and I can’t hear ‘Sit Down’ by James Brown without welling up anymore.

Sophie Graci (Treasurer): The Ferryman @ Gielgud Theatre, London

I saw The Ferryman originally by accident – a friend had a spare ticket and I wasn’t doing anything that evening so I decided to go along. I have rarely been as affected by a play as I was by this one: coming from an Irish Catholic family so much of the production rang true to my personal experience, although I can understand the criticisms of stereotyping when the children are given whisky on Harvest morning.

Quinn Carney is masterfully played by Paddy Considine — in his stage debut! Please, someone, give him more to do — but the whole cast rarely put a foot wrong. It’s a play that offers very little hope for reconciliation but shocked me into tears, even when I insisted on going to see it a second time. A beautiful and difficult play, wonderfully realised.

Marina Jenkins (President): Anatomy of A Suicide @ Royal Court, London

I took myself to see Anatomy of a Suicide at the Royal Court at the start of the summer holidays as I have always been such a fan of Hattie Morahan and wanted to see her in this. I had no expectations of the production. Birch essentially imagined an utterly masterful creation.

Three plays, enacted alongside each other onstage, took an observant and sophisticated examination of the possibility of hereditary suicide and severe mental illness. By intertwining the past, present, and future, the play allows for debate on what determines character: nature or nurture?

Whilst the play was centred on resounding sadness and sense of displacement, the audience is offered a modicum of hope and I was fixated from beginning to end.

Emily Oulton (Vice President): Hamlet @ Almeida Theatre, London

I saw Robert Icke’s Hamlet — a wonderfully forensic interpretation of Shakespeare’s classic — twice this summer. He created Hamlet’s world in a contemporary Denmark, using the family’s regency as a chance to ask questions about surveillance, privacy and secrecy.

He used impressive visuals and had his actors speaking the text in such a conversational, casual manner that it broke down the iamb and allowed us as an audience to not think of the piece as an archaic classic, but a relevant modern story about the breakdown of a family in the limelight.