Municipal Theatre London
theSpace @ Jury's Inn
“In the dark wilderness beyond the gates of Eden, Cain,the first born son of Adam and Eve holds nothing but contempt for the God that expelled his parents from the sacred garden. Yet from the darkness, his prayers are heard; Lucifer, the fallen angel, offers him knowledge and salvation. But at a price.”
Cain was originally presented as a “closet drama”, what we would now assign to the term “staged reading”, as an intellectual exercise and exorcise rather than a play; it’s all words and ideas. As such, it’s an extremely interesting debate that probably has no resolution; that’s what makes it such a popular topic.
Although the debate between good and evil, nature vs nurture, conflicting ideas is a feast for the glutenous mind, this wordy material fails as drama. In this form even the most capable of hands, Cain would still seem bloodless.
Alexander Pardey as Cain and Igor Memic here have this impossible task. Directed by Rio Matchett, the actors seem uncomfortable and stiff. Mr Memic especially cannot seem to stop himself from "acting", playing the emotion or idea.
It sadly just doesn’t come to life. But, as challenging as the material in this form is, these three have to be given credit for trying.
Reviewer: Catherine Lamm