Love London Love Culture’s Editor Emma Clarendon spoke to the actress about the revival of Marin Crimp’s Dealing With Clair.
Thanks so much for talking to me – what can audiences expect from Dealing with Clair? If we get it right, Dealing with Clair should make you laugh! But it has a dark side. It exposes the ruthlessness of the property market, and how horrid everyone can become when money is involved. The design is pretty special too.
What were your initial thoughts on the play and the story? I think the play is partly about happiness, or the search for happiness. Money is huge in the play. Some characters have little, some have lots, and all of them want more. But does that make you happy? What are we all working towards, and when all that is stripped away what are we left with.
What stood out for you about Martin Crimp’s writing when you first read Dealing with Clair? Martin creates these wonderfully vivid, full bodied characters, he gives you plenty of clues in to how they might operate, but nothing is prescriptive. He writes relationships so intricately. And every single word is equally as important.The text is full of gear shifts and you can’t let the energy drop for one second.
Could you tell me about your character Clair? Clair is a young woman, living in a big city, trying to close a deal. We mostly see her in ‘work mode’ but she has lots going on beneath the surface.
It’s been thirty years since the play was last seen at the Orange Tree Theatre. What do you think audiences will take away from it in 2018? We discovered when we began comparing 1988 to 2018 that when it comes to the housing market, very little has actually changed (except for the spiralling prices of course!). It’s still as cut throat and ruthless as it was back then.Whether you’ve ever bought, sold, or let a property I think you’ll find lots you can relate to. Hopefully audiences will recognise the characters. Will see others, or maybe even themselves up there. And depending on which character that may, or may not be a good thing!
For those who have never seen Dealing with Clair – how would you describe it? NO SPOILERS! It’s more mysterious than it may at first appear………..
By Emma Clarendon
Dealing with Clair will play at the Orange Tree Theatre from the 26th October until the 1st December. For more information visit: https://www.orangetreetheatre.co.uk/whats-on/dealing-with-clair