At a time when the arts are even more stretched than usual, Daphne Kuhn, owner of The Auto & General Theatre on the Square and independent and unsubsidised producer, sometimes takes on a project of artistic merit, but somewhat dubious financial viability. Betrayal, a 1978 play by British writer, Harold Pinter, is probably one such work. It is brave theatre.
Directed and designed by Greg Homann, lit by Oliver Hauser, and with a cast of seasoned actors, this play should, theoretically, have flown better than it did. It felt stilted and I couldn’t work out if it was the fault of the script or the actors or the director. At times the audience was compelled to laugh at what were essentially serious lines.
Anthony Coleman played the role of Robert, the wronged husband, while his wife, Emma, is played by Carly Graeme, Tom Fairfoot plays the role of Robert’s friend and Emma’s lover. Jose Domingos plays the small role of waiter.
The theme of betrayal in sexual relationships is as old as time itself, and only Robert’s admission that he has hit Emma a few times, just because her felt like “bashing her about” is shocking in the modern context.
All round, this was a wonderful opportunity to see a work not often performed, and something out of the ordinary.