_A season of new plays by young writers developed by the Royal Court Young Writers Programme. _
Eddie’s restless, his wife is anxious for him to finish their new kitchen cabinets. Since he discovered Arnold a teenager online, he’s become distracted. And when they meet, it’s soon clear that Arnold’s interest in him goes beyond their night-time encounters.
Elyzabeth Gregory Wilder works as a writers’ assistant for CBS television. She is a member of Youngblood, the Ensemble Studio Theatre’s programme for writers under 30.
Design: Ultz, Lighting: Ultz, Trevor Wallace, Sound: Scott Myers
Cast: Phil Daniels, John Sharian, Matt Smith, Nicola Walker
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Dates in November
Fri 5 Nov 2004
Jerwood Theatre Upstairs
Sold out Performances
From L to R: John Sharian and Phil Daniels.
Elyzabeth Gregory Wilder’s Fresh Kills offers another rummage in the feculent scrag bin of modern male sexuality.
The scenario she has concoted is full of nasty possibilities. Her protagonist, Eddie (Phil Daniels), is a builder from Staten Island with a battered pick-up, a sceptical wife (Nicola Walker), a young son and a secret online relationship with a mop-haired 16 year old named Arnold (Matt Smith).
Director Wilson Milam has permitted his designer, Ultz, to fill the tiny stage with Eddie’s truck, its tail lights blazing into the eyes of the audience. What might have been a dreary obstacle becomes an opportunity for imaginative choreography and the masking effect that occurs when the actors climb into the cab adds useful verisimilitude to the sex scenes.
Wilder is particularly good at post-coital wrangling: the opening minutes, played with delicate skill by Daniels and Walker, allow a cosy scene of fellatio to yield to a row about cash. It is a subtle indictment of the play’s central marriage.
Matthew Sweet, EVENINGSTANDARD, 9 November 2004
Wilder, a 25 year old American dramatist of considerable promise, writes a strong, curt dialogue and knows how to sustain the tension inherent in her story.
There are plenty of good exchanges, and not only between husband and wife. Witness Eddie’s dealings with his close buddy and brother-in-law, a New York cop played by John Sharian: here’s a female dramatist who can write better about man-and-man than all but a few male playwrights do about woman-and-woman.
There’s no director better than Wilson Milam when it comes to evoking the rougher, harsher side of American life, and, all cavils aside, his production generates the charged atmosphere Wilder presumably wants.
Benedict Nightingale, THETIMES, 10 November 2004
Wilson Milam directs with verve, compressing the action into a small space dominated by Eddie’s truck, the classic symbol of blue collar American malehood and, in this instance, also the site of transgressive desire.
p(=reviewer-name). Claire Allfree, METRO, 10 November 2004
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