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Cracking theatre

By SLifeMark  |  Posted: December 06, 2012

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The Half

Taliesin Arts Centre

YOU should never mention the Scottish play before going on stage.

And it's probably not a good idea drink half a bottle of whisky, attempt to drown yourself in the sink and forget to put your trousers on, either.

But all these things and more are committed by the superb Guy Masterson in this one-man show of an aging actor flying headlong onto a path of self- destruction and almost inevitable public humiliation as he prepares backstage for the show of a lifetime: a solo, four and a half-hour performance of Hamlet.

As Guy's temperament fluctuates with nerves (and booze) throughout the performance, so too does the pace of the play.

And while he comes to life in the more manic moments of his stage-fright induced delirium, reaching a climax with several morbidly amusing and ineffectual suicide attempts, on the flip-side the periods of melancholy and self-pity become a little bit samey at times.

An enjoyable, thought-provoking, and poignantly funny play.

Mark Rees

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