Vera Vera Vera

Hayley Squires

Vera Vera Vera

The boy who comes back from a war far away in a wooden box is glorified and called a hero. As the funeral plans are made in a small Kent town, his siblings squabble over who he was. Maybe the fanfare isn’t needed for this heroic martyr. Vera Vera Vera is a blackly comic play about what we are willing to fight for. Hayley Squires is a bracing new voice, clear eyed and loud, looking at violence, neglect and apathy. 3.2 out of 5 based on 8 reviews
Vera Vera Vera

Omniscore:

Location London
Venue Royal Court Upstairs
Director Jo McInnes
Cast Daniel Kendrick, Tommy McDonnell, Abby Rakic-Platt, Ted Riley Danielle Flett
From March 2012
Until April 2012
Box Office 020 7565 5000
 

The boy who comes back from a war far away in a wooden box is glorified and called a hero. As the funeral plans are made in a small Kent town, his siblings squabble over who he was. Maybe the fanfare isn’t needed for this heroic martyr. Vera Vera Vera is a blackly comic play about what we are willing to fight for. Hayley Squires is a bracing new voice, clear eyed and loud, looking at violence, neglect and apathy.

Reviews

The Stage

Aleks Sierz

Squires writes with a mixture of fire and fury, with occasional humorous asides to vary the pace. She not only understands the mindset of the young teens, but is unafraid of exploring the emotional blackness of their older relatives. The play is humane, political and punctuated by songs from Second World War forces sweetheart, Vera Lynn, whose contrasting tones remind us of previous conflicts.

27/03/2012

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The Daily Telegraph

Charles Spencer

The director, Jo McInnes, finds all the strengths of this terrific debut, juxtaposing the play’s violence and despair with moments of humour and aching tenderness. And the use of Vera Lynn songs to punctuate the scenes conjures up a kinder, wiser, and more decent England than the one we inhabit today.

28/03/2012

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The Times

Jeremy Kingston

I take the play’s argument to be that for Britain to be fighting wars is stupid, and hence, I suppose, the play’s title, since Vera Lynn songs are played during the scene changes. But it is rather like calling Don Giovanni “Wolfgang Wolfgang Wolfgang”.

28/03/2012

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The Observer

Susannah Clapp

The kind-hearted core is made too explicit but the subject is real, the dialogue fierce and Jo McInnes's excellent direction makes the play feel ample. The action is not hurled around but kept in a state of constant vigilance.

01/04/2012

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The Sunday Times

Maxie Szakwinska

Squires’s short drama gets derailed by obviousness, but the playwright brings an economical wit to her frequently foul-mouthed characters, who emerge as casualties of small-town anomie, with little to do except drink and get high.

01/04/2012

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The Evening Standard

Henry Hitchings

Running at exactly an hour, it doesn’t feel meaty enough and occasionally the storytelling is loud rather than vivid.

27/03/2012

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The Financial Times

Ian Shuttleworth

Squires cops out with the closing sentimental suggestion that “cuddles are the way forward”.

28/03/2012

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The Guardian

Michael Billington

Squires is at her best, in fact, when exploring the tentative nature of adolescent passion: the scenes between the two 16-year-olds have a real glow, not least when the school drop-out Sammy gives a vivid account of the plot of Romeo and Juliet based entirely on the Baz Luhrman movie.

27/03/2012

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