Jack Thorne's new work, Mydidae, is superb. Entirely down-to-earth, quietly pained and often hilarious, this two-hander fits perfectly into Trafalgar Studios 2 (having previously been performed in the Soho Theatre), allowing a play about intimacy and privacy to feel truly close and invasive. Both Phoebe Waller-Bridge and Keir Charles give excellent performances in a challenging piece - set entirely in a couple's bathroom, the realism of their everyday activities utilises fantastic observation and - frankly - immense bravery.
Dry White Theatre Company challenge writers to produce new work using specific briefs & goals to engage their audience. While Artistic Directors Phoebe Waller-Bridge & Vicky Jones describe themselves as a "new" company, Dry White seems to be going from strength to strength, having been company in residence at the Bush Theatre from 2010 to 2012. They set Jack Thorne to pen a play in this shared domestic setting, exploring privacy and intimacy. The result shows off Thorne's lively, articulate style and is quite simply relatable, interesting theatre.
While it almost seems counterproductive to mention it, the virtue of women stripping off for "artistic" reasons has recently been widely debated. Though it is obviously glaringly wrong for any actor's abilities to be upstaged by their own body, Mydidae so completely succeeds in its use of nudity to provide realism, that it is surely a counterargument in itself. Yes, both actors are often naked, but not for titillation's sake - the result is merely that the actors seem all the more skilled for producing such authentic work.
Sensitive direction is provided throughout by Vicky Jones, who truly understands the value of silence in performance. The lighting, designed by Jack Williams, was extremely effective, and the set even has running water. Music could be used - or not used - more sensitively, though that hardly detracts from the overall enjoyment of what really is an excellent production.
Mydidae runs at Trafagar Studios 2 until March 30 and is unsuitable for a younger audience (contains nudity, sexual references and language).