Relocating the East Yorkshire based Kilnsea coastline to the North West of London, Tom Wells’ Big Big Sky transforms and enlivens Hampstead Theatre ‘Downstairs’ stage.
A considered observation of nature and its limitless beauty, Wells’ production smartly and instinctively grasps the cast’s connection with the environment around them, the show able to capture how moods shift, as the elements, wild life, and natural occurrences around them also move to their own rhythm. Bob Bailey’s homely cafe stage design a wonderful, key component of the production, attention to detail, from the tables and chairs and worktops, to birdwatching posters and notice boards instantly drawing all into the next 90 minutes.
Jessica Jolleys’ independent Lauren is a likeable presence, a hard worker who we can relate to, working for a secure future. Lauren’s dynamic with her father – Dennis, played by Matt Sutton brilliantly capturing misunderstandings, memories and Dennis’ love of photography and bird watching. Sam Newton’s Ed beams, energetic and lively in spirit, his need to constantly fill silences a natural source of humour. Jennifer Daley’s Angie is a strong, warm personality, resilient from circumstances out of her control, a cafe owner and matriarch always there to look after everyone else, who could do with being looked after and cared for also.
Big Big Sky’s organic, welcoming atmosphere has you feel as if you’re apart of the evening, a fellow customer, taking in the drama around you, natural. Tessa Walker’s production is hearty, a feel good, fast paced evening presenting a cast we genuinely care about and can invest our time in.
Review by Lucy Basaba.
Big Big Sky is currently showing until Saturday 11th September 2021 at the Hampstead Theatre. To find out more about the production, visit here…
For our interview with Big Big Sky Writer Tom Wells, visit here…