This Much (or an Act of Violence Towards the Institution of Marriage)
John Fitzpatrick’s thoughtful new play is an exploration of the reasons why two gay men might want to tie the knot. Is marriage a gesture of permanence? A celebration of a relationship? Or is it an act of social conformity? A chance to do as others do; to have the big day, the cake, the attention?
Gar is torn between two men: his partner, Anthony, and Albert, a younger man who he met online. He is attracted to both of them, in different ways. Anthony is pressuring Gar into a marriage he sometimes wants and sometimes doesn’t want – he begins to view Albert as a way of sabotaging his relationship.
Kate Sagovsky’s production has an appealingly strong visual identity. The production standards are particularly high for a fringe show, with a versatile set, designed by Alex Berry, that uptight Anthony is forever hoovering and cleaning.
Nudity is very much a part of its aesthetic too. There’s a lot of penis in this play. But it never feels gratuitous. It’s a way of capturing both the intimacy and the exposure nature of a relationship.
There is some really strong acting from all three actors. And while the dialogue becomes a bit overwrought in places, This Much is still a rich and considered piece of writing.