WYNDHAM THEATRE LONDON
I booked the tickets for this play quite a while ago and have therefor had a lot of time to look forward to it. This is both a joy and a danger: I find that, the longer you look forward to something, the more likely you are to get disappointed because your expectations have been raised over such a long period of time.
In this case I was not disappointed at all. The main reason I wanted to see it was because Alfred Enoch was in it. I did not know much about the content of the play, except that it was about Mark Rothko. I have always liked Art and so this was a nice combination of two (well, three, if we count Alfred Enoch as one as well) interests of mine: Art and Theatre. So, I did get to see two actors who were working well together, an interesting philosophical debate about the value and internal life of art, and some really cool design elements.
The set was maybe a little bit too literal for my taste, but it was perfectly practical. It consisted of a high room with several canvasses leaning against the walls that were put into the centre between each new scene and whose subjects became more and more black. In that sense it reflected the content of the discussions between the two characters, which felt a little bit too literal and on the nose for me, but I am aware that I am much more attuned to these kinds of things and that for another audience member it might not have been so obvious.
What did really fascinate me was the light. Not only did the splashes of colour on the canvasses bring the paintings to life, the combination of their 'normal' studio lighting and the switching on of 'work lights' showed a refreshing contrasts between the two and revealed some of the artificiality of the event. When they were switched off again the studio light seemed all the darker and so was the atmosphere. It brought home the importance of light for the presentation of art and the impact it can have.