Theatre review: Take The Rubbish Out, Sasha explores the process of loss
The Ukranian theatre piece is more bitter than bitter-sweet
Ukranian playwright Natalia Vorozhbyt's play for the Play, a Pie and a Pint season, translated by Sasha Dugdale, is more bitter than bitter-sweet, dealing as it does with the emotional complexities of the grieving process.
Stepdaughter Oksana (an excellent Jenny Hulse) is heavily pregnant, and has a tendency to idolise Sasha (Paul Cunningham), her late stepfather. Oksana and her brittle mother Katya (Jill Riddiford), over the course of a couple of years, still feel Sasha's presence, a focus for their respective idiosyncracies and frustrations. Stashed toffees and Deep Purple songs become signifers of more innocent days.
While Oksana still regards him through a child's perspective, as an officer fighting in Crimea, and loving father figure, the very mention of him sends Katya into a jealous rage, as his alcoholism and straying comes to the fore. Yet with time comes clarity. Questions of status, masculinity and family loyalty loom large in the pared-down dialogue, even if the transitions do not always segue smoothly.
Some tender moments and nice staging choices however make the play a touching meditation on loss and the inconsistencies of legacy.
Oran Mor, Mon 23–Sat 28 Mar