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Review of One Minute at the King’s Head Theatre

Simon Stephens’ enigmatic play is about the disappearance of a little girl and its impact on those whose job is to find her, or who want to help or who want simply to grieve. And although One Minute and the characters emerged out of workshops in Sheffield, the play is also very much about London and Londoners with a cast comprising a professional woman balancing her career with motherhood, mismatched flat-sharers and a duo of stressed and sweary coppers.

One Minute at the King's Head Theatre
One Minute at the King’s Head Theatre

Dr Anne Schults, the mother of the missing child, is played by a profoundly moving Reshma Morris while Imogen Davis and Imogen Mackenzie are the flat-sharers: Marie-Louise, a hyperkinetic and at times hilarious Davis, is looking for meaning in what appears to be her privileged life; and McKenzie as the job-juggling Catherine, striving to stay on track but eventually losing her patience.

With the publication this week of the Casey report into the manifest failings of the Metropolitan Police, it is a relief to find that the police officers are not behind the disappearance, merely that one – Frederik Lysegaard – is an appalling racist while the other – an excellent Lee Lomas – is dissatisfied with almost every aspect of his life. Aside from a wildly misjudged opening scene, the production makes for an at times compelling seventy minutes. For some, especially given its billing as “a dark crime drama”, the outcome of the investigation may be frustrating but that is surely the point… Life just isn’t like that. When we fall in love, we sometimes fall out of it almost as quickly. And when we disappear, we don’t always come back.

3 Star Review

Review by Louis Mazzini

One minute. That’s how long it takes for a little girl, Daisy Schults, to disappear from a busy London street.

This story takes place over the year following her disappearance. We follow the investigation through a constellation of five characters, each affected by the unfolding tragedy. Her mother, Dr Schults, pragmatic, intelligent & negotiating grief. Robert, a young detective, eager to prove himself. His partner, Gary, world-weary copper with a poet’s heart. A key witness. A girl working at a bar. Five lives coming together & clashing.

As the investigation stalls, their humanity is challenged. How does grief shape them?

Author | Simon Stephens
Director | Demi Leigh
Producers | Working Actors Studio & Lee Lomas

Marie Louise | Imogen Davis
Catherine | Imogen Mackenzie
DI Gary Burroughs | Lee Lomas
DC Robert Evans | Frederik Lysegaard
Dr Anne Schults | Reshma Morris
One Minute
20 – 26 Mar 2023

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