An original play written by two of its actors, Alistair Powning and Michael Booth, The Great Lie of the Western World introduces us to Simon (Powning) and Fiona (Kate Skinner), whose mundane daily routine is shaken up by enigmatic couch-surfer Emerson (Booth), Simon’s old friend.
Simon and Fiona are simply getting on with life. Emerson, on the other hand, aspires to be “a grain of sand clogging up the machine”. Emerson challenges both Simon and Fiona and their notions of happiness, success and beauty.
The tiny TAP Gallery theatre space occasionally feels uncomfortably intimate – but that’s all the better to observe every aspect of these subtle and naturalistic performances, as though you’re sat in the inner-city apartment along with them. The characters speak all at once or over music – but what’s not said is just as important as what is said.
By the end of the show, Emerson has not only held a mirror up to Simon and Fiona’s lives, but to ours – and given us a taste of what it’s like to defy that ‘great lie’.