London 1988. The Cold War is approaching its endgame and somebody in spymaster Elizabeth Hapgood’s network is leaking secrets. Tom Stoppard’s play is revived by Hampstead Theatre and Howard Davies.
The back wall of the theatre is transformed with an 80s, surveillance style video wall, through which the wide, bare stage is transformed with a mixture of period imagery and spy photography, and the light from the screens reflected in the steel panels of the cubicle set. The wall is a custom-designed fixture, built from 100 40-inch LCD TVs.
Ian William Galloway's shifting video wall of images lends visual intrigue to the nearly cinematic cross-cutting.
In their vivid sharpness both Ashley Martin-Davis’s sets and Ian William Galloway’s video designs ensure, like Davies’s production, that we end up illumined rather than blinded by science.