Directed by Peter Carr and written by Florian Zeller, one of France’s hottest new writing talents, The Father, is being staged by the Ōtaki Players.
There is usually a moment in the theatre, often after the first few minutes or the first few scenes, when you start to relax into a play. You are confident that you have a grip on it; all anxiety about making sense of the action disappears. Not so with this play. Winner of the 2014 Molire award for France’s best play, this darkly humorous and deeply poignant production of Florian Zeller’s The Father is a tragi-comic mystery.
The story of Andre (Rob Heather), an elderly man with dementia, and the efforts of his daughter Anne (Jan Dykstra) to balance her love for her father and the need to care for him with the demands of her own life and relationship with Pierre (Harley Kaihe-Katterns).
This is a play that constantly confounds expectations and works almost like a thriller, as complete strangers keep on turning up in Andre’s flat. Though can we even be sure we are in Andre’s flat? Also featuring Mike Neville, Tracey Bentall and Stevie Metin. The Father is a play full of guile, particularly in the way it toys with time, yet is also simplicity itself. One and a half hours long with no intermisson.
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