Prior to a West End transfer, last year's production of Arthur Miller's Broken Glass briefly returns to the Tricycle. It's 1938, and as news and images of Kristallnacht reach New York, the psychological effect on a middle-aged Jewish couple seems to be taking physical form. Sylvia (Tara FitzGerald) mysteriously lost all feeling in her legs but the doctors can find nothing physically wrong with her. Her husband Phillip (Antony Sher,) at first trying to help, increasingly starts to fall apart himself as he begins to confront the possibility that he himself and the problems in their relationship might be what's really behind his wife's illness. Designer Mike Britton has taken his inspiration for the set from abandoned mental hospitals, so the mental landscape is very much at the forefront in Iqbal Khan's production, with GP Dr Hyman (Stanley Townsend) trying to apply his limited knowledge of psychiatry - still a relatively new science - first to Sylvia's fears and later to Phillip's self-loathing antisemitism. Though dealing with a lot of dark topics this is an absorbing and energetic piece, a lot of that energy provided by Townsend whose womanising, confident doctor is an antidote to the central couple's (also powerfully acted) mental and physical collapse.
Broken Glass by Arthur Miller is booking until the 10th of September at the Tricycle Theatre, and from the 14th of September to the 10th of December at the Vaudeville Theatre.