Home / Drama / Escape the Scaffold – The Other Room, Cardiff

Escape the Scaffold – The Other Room, Cardiff

Writer: Titas Halder

Director: Hannah Price

Reviewer: Jacqui Onions

In the current political climate, Escape the Scaffold has the potential to be an important and thought-provoking piece of theatre. This new play by Titas Halder is a co-production between The Other Room, Mongrel Thumb and Theatre503 which premiered at Theatre503 in March 2017 before transferring to Cardiff.

Taking the story chronologically, the characters are just three ordinary people – friends at university about to graduate and make their way in the world. Each has a differing way of viewing that world; the idealist that wants to change the world, the pragmatist that wants to keep his head down and get a good job, and the fearful torn between her ideals and her desire for security. However, this play is far from chronological. We are introduced to these three at a much deeper and darker part of their story and so ensues a series of flash backs and fast forwards that build the intrigue and tension you would expect from a good thriller. On the downside, this non-linear form makes it more difficult to really get to know the characters. As these three differing outlooks on life are thrown into an extreme version of what happens when the “he won’t get elected” politician comes to power, you want this play to make you ask questions of yourself. Which character are you most like? How far could you be pushed in an extreme situation? Sadly, it does not fulfill its potential.

We are introduced to these three at a much deeper and darker part of their story and so ensues a series of flash backs and fast forwards that build the intrigue and tension you would expect from a good thriller. On the downside, this non-linear form makes it more difficult to really get to know the characters. As these three differing outlooks on life are thrown into an extreme version of what happens when the “he won’t get elected” politician comes to power, you want this play to make you ask questions of yourself. Which character are you most like? How far could you be pushed in an extreme situation? Sadly, it does not fulfill its potential.

With the action jumping around over several years, the cast are tasked with playing the same characters at different points in their lives. Rosie Sheehy as Grace, Trieve Blackwood-Cambridge as Aaron, and Charles Reston as Marcus all portray this with ease and the attention to detail in their performances is such that you can instantly tell at which point in time a scene is taking place by the smallest of mannerisms.

Mark Bailey’s costume design subtly helps to make the jumps in time clear throughout the piece. However, his set design is rather prop heavy and much time is taken up moving furniture and other items around the small space. This is handled well by the cast, with Hannah Price’s direction turning it into part of the performance and the accompanying soundscape from Chris Bartholomew adding tension and drama, but all that moving still ultimately slows the pace down.

On close examination, Escape the Scaffold may not make the big political and psychological statements that the subject matter lends itself to, but it definitely is a gripping thriller packed with suspense that will keep you on the edge of your seat.

Runs until 6 May 2017 | Image: Aenne Pallasca

Writer: Titas Halder Director: Hannah Price Reviewer: Jacqui Onions In the current political climate, Escape the Scaffold has the potential to be an important and thought-provoking piece of theatre. This new play by Titas Halder is a co-production between The Other Room, Mongrel Thumb and Theatre503 which premiered at Theatre503 in March 2017 before transferring to Cardiff. Taking the story chronologically, the characters are just three ordinary people - friends at university about to graduate and make their way in the world. Each has a differing way of viewing that world; the idealist that wants to change the world, the…

Review Overview

The Reviews Hub Score

Packed with suspense

Brighton Fringe Directory

About The Reviews Hub - South West

The Reviews Hub - South West
The Southwest team is under the editorship of John Roberts (pro tem) and Joan Phillips. The Reviews Hub was set up in 2007. Our mission is to provide the most in-depth, nationwide arts coverage online.

Do you agree? Leave a comment