A new play by Chris Szuca (and his solo debut as a playwright) and directed by Jodi Burgess (Secrets), The Box explores darker sides of romantic love through two plotlines.
The first one follows younger Robyn and Andrew (Emma Stirling, Dan Burman) as they move in together, while in the second story we find the couple’s elder selves (Pat Garrett, Will Anderson) as older Robyn pays her former lover a visit.
Given the extremes reached by both younger characters and the fact that we start the play when at least a big move has been made by one of the characters, I found myself craving for a beginning set earlier in the couple’s life together, and seeing less of their older selves in spite of Garrett’s and Anderson’s fine performances (and in spite of finding the concept of the younger/older double narrative incredibly cool). Maybe the two plotlines could find a more compelling cohabitation if the four characters remained on stage throughout, and with a light design that creates two worlds, almost haunting one another. This may also give a more pivotal place to the box in which Robyn keeps her diary, and which (as the title suggests) is an important element of the play (a lovely choice of colour for the diary and older Robyn’s jacket did move in that direction though).