Rigged at the Unicorn Theatre

Life is full of choices, some as small as deciding what clothes to wear of a morning, others more life changing such your education and career, starting a family or knowing when to ask for help. We make choices constantly, and the choices never stop being made, regardless of what age we are.

Rigged playing at the Unicorn Theatre is all about these choices.

Each of the characters at some point within Ashmeed Sohoye’s new play has to make a decision, a choice, be it right from wrong, or significant life changes. These choices certainly aren’t easy and certainly provoke moral questions.

Staged within the Clore Studio Theatre of the Unicorn Theatre, Rigged is a challenging piece. It forces the spectator to think and possibly question those decisions which we have seen and heard many times before. When is right right? Or when is wrong wrong? Questions which aren’t easily answered.

Natalie Wilson, Theatre Centre’s artistic director and director of Rigged uses a blend of stylistic transitions, music and lighting to punctuate this new piece of writing. Although at times the ‘movement’ between scenes grew a little tiresome, the general feel of the piece resonated through every closely chosen detail.

A growing sense of anger, of a sense of ‘I want more than just this’ is said beneath every line and clenched fist.

Whilst I believe the writing needs some more work to fully bring the piece to life, what I admired about Rigged is its accessibility. It was a treat to be surrounded by an audience so vibrant in ages, and all appreciating the piece itself. Speaking in a matter of fact manner, the characters of Sarah and Nathan are easily likened to those that we witness within our society and schools.

Equally the moral dilemmas raised within Rigged are ones which are prominent within our current society. Teenage pregnancy, school drop outs and gambiling are constant issues that are being raised on a yearly basis. Yet with each of issues comes the matter of choice, and thus the theme of Rigged. At what point do you turn around and say no, enough is enough?.

The casting for Rigged is perfect. Hats off to Niamh Webb who plays Sarah as the cocky-mouthed teen who falls pregnaunt yet aspires to be something much more than just a mother. Equally Kyle Summercorn as the aggressive school drop out, Nathan, shows a vast array of controlled anger and violence but equally a funny character. Daisy Whyte as the mother, Kathy, who lacks the ability to read; plays a sensitive part, weighing out the balance of anger within the piece. Lastly Paul Clerkin as the step-father, Gary, shows that behind a gambling exterier he is just as sensitive and wanting more from the life he has chosen.

Rigged is educational without being preachy. It’s functional without being over simplified. And it’s full of potential for both teens and adults.

Rigged is on at the Unicorn Theatre until 17th October, see their website for more details. www.unicorntheatre.com