Nicola Wilson’s Plaques & Tangles is a deeply emotional piece dealing with the complicating and devastating effects of Alzheimer’s. Megan, a mother of two, must fight this terrible illness knowing full well that no cure is yet to be found. Breaking her family apart and eventually leading to a tragic death that breaks your heart as an audience member. We also get to see the earlier years of Megan’s life which are flashbacks to her first realising she was diagnosed.
The cast deal with this subject in a delicate, respectful but truthful manner. Actress Monica Dolan (who plays Megan) gives a truly stunning performance and takes you deeper into the mental turmoil it must feel to suffer from this disease. This is further highlighted by the stage, set in traverse, and moderately plain except for a large tangle of lights directly above centre stage. Representing the power of thoughts and impulses within the brain. As a new feeling sparks a new impulse the lights flash, representing that of brain cells within the mind.
Personally I cannot recommend this show enough. One gets sucked into the piece and sympathises with the characters, who are drawn to breaking point. Whether you know or do not know someone with Alzheimer’s, this piece will open your eyes to the inner struggles one must go through to overcome it and pull at your heart strings from beginning to bitter end.
Review written by Luke Redhead.
Plaques and Tangles is currently showing at the Royal Court Theatre until Saturday 7th November. For more information on the production, visit here…