The Actor’s Nightmare Review

Park Theatre until 10 August 2019

Reviewed by Alex Sykes


This is a show with a twist, instead of being one big show it is 6 little shows performed one after the other – all written by Tony Award winner Christoper Durang. Ostensibly a one act play, the show is 90 minutes with no interval

The first is Mrs Sorken, with the titular character being played by Kate Sumpter. The character monologues the meaning of words linked to theatre and how they are used in every day life.

The second Business Lunch At The Russian Tea Room. This features Meaghan Martin as a powerful Hollywood producer and Adrian Richards as a scriptwriter who isn’t sure he likes the idea of a priest falling in love with a rabbi and pair then going through a sex change.

The third play is Medea, which a voiceover states this was choreographed by Britney Spears. Medea herself is played by Kate Sumpter with the chorus being played by Richards, Martin and Layo-Christina Akinlude.

The fourth play is a short one woman play in which Martin plays an unsuccessful comedian who admits she uses a laugh track to build her confidence as her self-confidence has been ruined by her mum.

The fifth play is Desire, Desire, Desire in which a census taker (Stefan Menaul) finds himself being desired by Ellen (Akinlude).

The final play is The Actor’s Nightmare which features Menaul as George, a man who isn’t sure who he is or what play he he is in.

With a minimalist but effective set (Anna Drifmtier), this adaptation directed by Lydia Parker, allows its actors to shine, unencumbered by complicated set changes, distracting lighting ( Jia Morjaria) or overly ambitious soundscapes (Odinn Orn Hilmarsson). In short, this play was a pleasure to watch, and should certainly not be the basis for any nightmares.

Although a good night out, if you don’t read the programme you can get very confused very quicky.