After finding asylum in Britain, Bosnian Muslim Joe begins to build a new life for himself. With a girlfriend and a job working at a hostel he is finally back on track. Then Soldier, a man haunted by nightmares of foreign war zones, who has seen action in Bosnia arrives on the scene and Joe’s life crumbles anew.
Playwright Michael Crowley certainly succeeds in his aim to “tell a story that… showed how the lives of people… remote and unconscious of events, could be corrupted by events that took place years ago and thousands of miles away”. He does so poignantly, highlighting how little control one has over the future.
Much of the play focuses on systems and rules – on the making and breaking of them – creating huge tension between Joe and Soldier that is brilliantly simulated by Daniel Kanaber and Jim Sturgeon.
Particularly good is Ian Bonar as gawky, sulky Warren, another inmate at the hostel, who is a catalyst for much of the tension between Joe and Soldier. An excellent, if uncomfortable play that illustrates the asylum-related issues vividly, yet also holds a strong narrative interest.