12 August 2016
The Traverse has been the powerhouse of new writing for so long, it’ s easy to take it for granted. But every year it presents a varied programme and plays to remember. This year it’ s Milk, Ross Dunsmore’s beautiful play about the need for nourishment, both food, and love. Steph and Ash are teens facing a future made up of celebrity dreams.
Unhappy about her image and the lack of attention from Ash, she fixates on her teacher, Danny. He is an expectant father and his wife, Nicole, is determined to breast feed. Cyril and May are in their nineties, afraid to leave their flat because of youths and dogs, even though he liberated Europe.
At first, the strands seem seperate, but when Steph kisses Danny and sends him a topless picture, Nicole struggles to breast feed and May dies, meanng Cyril has to leave the flat, the strands are beautifully brought together.
Orla O’Loughlin’s sensitive direction and Paul Meller’s uncluttered design guides us through the need for love. Yes, some strands are left loose, but a terrific ensemble, (so good no one should be singled out), and a deeply moving conclusion underlines the milk of human kindness. Theatrical nourishment.
Photo: Sally Jubb