V&V, The Vaults - ★★★★ - Until March 8, 2020

Photographer: Ali Wright.

By turns extremely funny and extremely touching, V&V, written and directed by Misha Pinnington, succeeds on several levels. The juxtaposition of the real, unfulfilled and largely letter based relationship between Vita Sackville-West and Virginia Woolf with a contemporary love affair, conducted principally by text, between Lottie and Mia makes for a highly entertaining play. Virginia and Vita are far less outspoken than the modern girls, far less funny too; it is hard to imagine Vita peeping around a screen with an expression of such glee at the prospect of sexual fulfillment. Superb, stiletto sharp, performances from Heather Wilkins and EM Williams make the characters come across as delightful women. High praise also to Nicola Chang and the crew who give us immaculately precise sound, lighting and projections. To properly appreciate the fun which snakes through the play one needs to at least be reasonably familiar with texting and, even more perhaps, “sexting.” The inherent dangers of misinterpretation are palpable. Big laughs abound before the rather somber conclusions. The scene where Vita talks about Virginia's death is truly heart-rending, concluding with a final, albeit imagined, chaste embrace. Mia and Lottie simply and sadly drift apart, and we share their despondent sense of what might have been. This sweetly touching and genuinely funny play, with its terrific performances, really deserves to be seen and welcomed.

Reviewed by D.S.J.

 Our Score:  ☆☆☆☆ 

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WHEN, WHERE, GETTING THERE:
Until March 8, 2020
Tue - Sat: 7:20 pm
The Vaults
Nearest tube: Waterloo
https://vaultfestival.com/whats-on/vv/

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