What’s it all about?
The invisible. These are people, not undetectable superheroes.
Why are they invisible? Because the government’s cuts to legal aid mean that they cannot afford to be seen or heard.
The play, written by Rebecca Lenkiewicz, centres on several relationships, of those desperately in need of legal aid and others, who are desperately trying to provide it.
Who’s in it?
Alexandra Gilbreath leads the cast as a sincere and impassioned Gail. Her law firm may be threatened with eviction but her loyalties, heart-warmingly, still lie with the individuals she’s trying to help.
Sirine Saba is compelling, both as Gail’s amusing but devoted assistant Laura and the tortured Aisha, a Pakistani wife desperate to escape her violent arranged marriage.
In both cases Scott Karim portrays her characters’ partners, one jaded by his girlfriend’s commitment to her job, the other terrifyingly brutal.
EastEnders’ Nicholas Bailey is a hot-tempered and broken Ken, so determined to get access to his children that he hunts Gail down on an online dating website in a bid to acquire free legal advice.
Then there’s Olivier Award winner Niall Buggy, who brings comic relief as a witty and loveable Shaun, a bereaved son in danger of being evicted from his home, but whose presence, once amusing, ends up travelling to the other end of the spectrum.
What should I look out for?
It may not be about superheroes but Spiderman does make an appearance in one of many dance sequences interspersed between the play’s dialogue.
In a nutshell?
Audiences will laugh and cry in equal measure as the government’s devastating cuts to legal aid are laid bare in Rebecca Lenkiewicz’s touching and timely piece at the Bush Theatre.
What’s being said on Twitter?
— Franc Ashman (@Franc_Ashman) July 8, 2015
Will I like it?
Domestic violence, eviction notices, bedroom tax demanded from a mother whose empty room is a result of her daughter’s death… no, this is not cheerful stuff. That said, there is humour, plenty of outstanding performances and, at the production’s heart, an undeniably important and incredibly timely subject that it’s reassuring to see being tackled on stage.
The Invisible is playing at the Bush Theatre until 15 August. You can book tickets through the venue’s website.