Corrina, Corrina review – high seas drama hits the rocks | Theater

Jhis ambitious new play by Chloë Moss is brilliantly directed and beautifully performed under the direction of Holly Race Roughan in this joint production of Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse with Headlong Theater Company. We are on a current freighter carrying containers from Felixstowe to Asia. (Moi Tran’s awe-inspiring design simultaneously shows the bridge, the bridge, and the neighborhoods below the bridge.) Moss defines this claustrophobic, hierarchical, rigid world as a microcosm in which issues of society-wide oppression and prejudice society occupy an important place.

Corrina (intense, diapered Laura Elsworthy) is the only woman on board, serving in her first post since leaving college as an A student a few years earlier. The reason for the delay has to do with a traumatic incident involving a classmate, Will. Now a senior officer, he disembarked unexpectedly on this trip. The ship’s passage through pirate-haunted waters off Somalia gives Will (Mike Noble, gaslight consumed) an excuse to stage a confrontation with Corrina, then play on institutional sexism to continue his selfish attempts to undermine Corrina, personally and professionally. .

The other crew members are mostly from the Philippines. Corrina, unlike the other officers, tries to establish friendly relations with these men. Angelo (James Bradwell, smiles hiding deep despair) confides in her about their disastrous working conditions and deferred salary payments for months. He himself was driven to loan sharks, who now threaten the family he works so hard to support. Through Angelo, the action movingly shows the human cost of institutional racism and the pursuit of profit. However, by using Angelo to advance Corrina’s story, the action itself seems to exploit her situation and that of her crewmates; less weight is attached to their fate than to his.

Moss’s intention to touch on important topics is admirable, but because his screenplay forces issues instead of dramatically expanding on them, characters and situations lose credibility and his arguments lose impact.