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Generations at the Young Vic

The Maria in the Young Vic has been transformed for Debbie Tucker Green's Generations.

Photo by Keith Pattison
Photo by Keith Pattison

Those who saw Love and Money in the small Maria theatre will be shaken to enter a space which has been changed out of all recognition. Gone are all seats and instead the audience sits on crates in the sand around an open kitchen. This could be outdoor theatre in the round.

We are in South Africa with the grandfather reading the Late Final edition of the Sowetan newspaper. Here three generations are preparing a real meal although, for all the male claims, the men do little cooking.

The award-winning Debbie Tucker Green has produced a string of disturbing plays and here in a new play she gives a snapshot of everyday life. Generations was seen in a Platform performance at the National Theatre in 2005. The Young Vic production with its largely South African cast has the feel of a South African township.

The there is much important repetition and much left unspoken as the simple story of AIDS reducing the family today unfolds. It is is a short play, with a cast of seven, which does not run over its advertised thirty minutes.

But this is more than half an hour for it is vital to be there early to hear the African singing which leads into the drama.

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