Anyone who’s ever tried internet dating (and yes, I count myself among that number) will be able to relate to the debut production from Namashkar, The Infinite Line Between Dating and Dying. The play follows a year in the life of its central character, as she goes on a series of horrible dates with various guys she meets online. It’s a comedy, but one that taps into the fear all singletons share: that while everyone around us is meeting their perfect partner, the universe has – for some reason – forgotten to send one our way.
Written and directed by Namashkar’s co-founder, Natasha Chandra, the play stars three actors who are just starting out in their careers. Joanna Coulton is ‘Her’, the young woman desperate to find love (if only to get her family off her back) and filled with optimism that, this time, she’ll meet the perfect guy, despite constant evidence to the contrary. That evidence is provided by Kieran Iyer, who makes his professional debut in style by playing not one, not two, but five different men. One’s socially awkward, one’s pretty but dim, another is intense and creepy – and each type is not only based on real people, but also instantly recognisable to the online daters among us.
Meanwhile, overseeing it all is The Universe, played by the fantastic Sónia Martins. Taking the form of friends, a waitress, station staff and more, she attempts, with increasing exasperation and a brilliantly dry sense of humour, to guide our stubborn heroine away from the wrong men and towards the right one. It’s a reminder that the universe knows what it’s doing, and to have a little faith; meeting the right person may not always be easy or straightforward, but with patience, it will happen. And as cliched as that message may be (any single person will tell you they’ve heard it from coupled-up friends more times than they can count), it does make you feel better, however briefly. I left the theatre almost believing that if I headed to the nearest Starbucks, the man of my dreams would be there waiting for me.
The Infinite Line also offers a light-hearted look at the phenomenon of internet dating itself, and I’m pretty sure I wasn’t the only audience member laughing in recognition. After all, who hasn’t judged someone because they’re two inches too short, and because they write ‘your’ when they mean ‘you’re’? Or gone out with someone so completely not your ‘type’, just in case they turn out to be The One – only to find that they’re really not, and now you’re stuck having dinner with them?
Anyone who answered yes to any of the above will enjoy this play. And for those who’ve never needed or wanted to go down this path to find love, The Infinite Line is an entertaining introduction to the crazy world of online dating, with all its potential pitfalls. While it probably won’t inspire anyone to go and join match.com, it’s definitely a lot of fun, and an impressive debut from this brand new company.
Review by Liz Dyer
Namashkar is proud to present their début performance with the première of their original, quirky and light-hearted piece about that thing that everyone has tried (or at least heard of!) On-Line dating. The story follows a year long pursuit of “Her” curiosity onto various internet dating apps and the 5 different “Him” (s) she meets under the oblivious influence of “The Universe”. We’re not going to say these characters are (not) based on real-life ones!
The Infinite Line between Dating and Dying
Dates: 9th of May 7:30pm. 10th of May 2:30pm and 6:30pm Press night: 9th May 2015 7:30pm
Etcetera Theatre, Camden 265 Camden High Street, London NW17BU
Box office: 0207 4824 857 Tickets: £12 Full – £10 concessions
Length: 60 min no interval
10th May 2015