What’s it all about?
Based on John Fowles’ dark tale of desire, The Collector is the story of lonely butterfly collector Frederick, who kidnaps art student Miranda, the object of his obsession. However, the story goes far deeper than that, exploring themes of class tension, loneliness, and the value we place on money and beauty.
Who’s in it?
It’s a two-hander comprising Daniel Portman of Game Of Thrones fame, and Lily Loveless, best known for her role in Skins. Both give formidable performances as two young people caught in a power struggle, each trying to make the other understand how they see the world.
What should I look out for?
Daniel Portman’s Frederick Clegg. Switching from awkward and endearing to unsettling and sinister in a matter of moments, Portman keeps the audience guessing to the very end. It is deeply uncomfortable as an audience member to find yourself sympathising with, and even rooting for, the abductor, and yet Portman manages to make us do just that.
The venue. With its dim lights, brick walls and train rattling overhead, there is no more appropriate venue in London than The Vaults to conjure the creepy claustrophobia of being hidden away underground.
In a nutshell?
The Collector is an unsettling tale on the perils of trying to attain the unattainable.
What’s being said on Twitter?
— Roseanna Brear (@RoseannaBrear) August 4, 2016
Saw @TheCollectorLDN tonight and I urge you all to see it! Absolutely brilliant performances.
— Sasha (@eggfrieddog) August 4, 2016
Will I like it?
Fans of Game Of Thrones and Skins will get pleasure enough from seeing Portman and Loveless in such an intimate venue (but Pod fans beware, there is no loveable squire here). However, The Collector is for anyone who likes their theatre challenging, who understands that right and wrong is not always clear cut. As Frederick Clegg earnestly explains at the start of the show, the truth is very complicated.
The Collector plays at The Vaults until 28 August. Book your tickets today.