Sex/Crime, Soho Theatre | Review

Soho Theatre
Reviewed on Wednesday 22nd January 2020 by Jake C Macpherson

The show opens to a simplistic set draped in plastic sheets and not much else but a single sofa – so many questions were initially made as an audience member as to what was going to happen throughout the next 60 minutes. This added to the complete suspense that was felt from the get go.

The production opens with the sudden entrance of ‘A’ and ‘B’. ‘A’ offers a service to recreate the killings of famous serial killers for the pleasure of random men. Enter ‘B’ who has booked himself in for an ‘authentic experience’ this doesn’t quite turn out to be what he has paid for…

Alexis Gregory, who plays ‘B’ in the production also wrote the show. Combined with the direction of Robert Chevara they have created this dark, new piece of theatre, which at moments is so relatable and humorous for a London audience. Names of well-known London locations are scattered liberally throughout the piece, giving the audience a real sense of place and time. This generally gives an immersive feeling. Gregory has a very unique style of writing and is very straight to the point in what he wants the audience to hear. The cut-throat reality of what is being said is jarring, but at moments feels almost poetic.

Multiple themes are explored throughout the show: the age of social media, violence, sexual fantasies and queerness to name a few. I don’t particularly feel as though all of the themes are easily translated and it is left to the audience to make personal conclusions throughout. But I do feel as though this adds to the performance. The sharp-witted humour often carries the piece and is well received by the entire audience.

Jonny Woo (‘A’), and Alexis Gregory (‘B’) play the two polar opposite characters in acting style and personality. During the show it's clear their relationship grows closer together and finds a balance between their emotional states. Both Woo and Gregory work well to hold an entire audiences’ engagement and towards the end, the audience do begin to connect with both characters. The chemistry between them was clear from the moment they entered the stage, and they both remain strong throughout.

It's hard to imagine this show re-staged in a bigger venue, as the Soho Theatre really offers a sense of intimacy and the tension of the piece really translates well in a black box studio Theatre. In essence Sex/Crime is a vulnerable and intimate piece of theatre which tackles the fetish of sexual violence in a modern society.

SEX/CRIME runs at the SOHO Theatre until 1st February 2020

photo credit: Matt Spike

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