Marloo Theatre production Marble peels the bandaids off unhappy marriages

Marble sees desperate passions erupt between Art (Joe Isaia) and Anne (Kylie Isaia) – husband and wife in real life and on stage.
Marble sees desperate passions erupt between Art (Joe Isaia) and Anne (Kylie Isaia) – husband and wife in real life and on stage.

HIGH Wycombe husband and wife Joe and Kylie Isaia leave no stone unturned in the latest production at Marloo Theatre in Greenmount.

The couple explore what happens when romantic dreams collide in the play Marble, written by Irish playwright Marina Carr and directed by Rodney van Groningen.

Joe plays Art, who works with Ben at the same company and their lives centre around board meetings and high-level presentations.

They have been friends since childhood and have beautiful stay-at-home and self-indulgent wives.

Art idly tells Ben he has dreamt of his friend’s wife as a blonde, wildly fulfilling sexual partner in a room lined with marble and decorated with marble statues.

Ben then finds his wife Catherine has had a similar dream about Art.

Playwright Carr is the author of more than a dozen critically-acclaimed plays and received the 1998 Irish Times Playwright Award, EM Foster Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the Windham-Campbell Prize, one of the world’s most lucrative literary honours.

Kylie plays Art’s wife Anne, a character who, on the surface, appears to have accepted her mundane existence, but the script unearths a looming existential crisis.

“While she dutifully carries out her role as a mother, ensuring her children’s basic needs are met, Anne has long since given up caring about her appearance or how others may perceive her,” she said.

“Enduring each day is achievable through the many routines Anne adopts – she must have her three glasses of red wine each evening, her blues are diminished by having every light blazing in the house all winter and bedtime is set before she starts the day.

“It’s vital the audience can relate to each of the characters in the play and empathise with each situation.

“To achieve that, it’s imperative to have a deep understanding of my character and her relationship with Art and Catherine, the woman who threatens to devastate her safe and secure – albeit unhappy – existence.”

Joe describes his character of Art as a happily married semi-professional father of four, who has reached that time in life where money is no longer an issue.

“He thinks of himself as a good husband and loyal friend with brandy, cigars and fishing his big three vices,” he said.

“On the surface, Art seems a pretty simplistic character but once you scratch the surface you discover complexities which even Art struggles to fathom.”

The main challenge, according to Joe, is finding the balance of his own personality, combined with the writer’s vision for the character, while the play is being shaped as a whole by the director.

“Then portraying this complex character to the degree the audience will identify with and feel empathy for presents an even bigger challenge,” he said.

“I know it’s a hackneyed expression but peeling the layers off bit by bit and slowly revealing the character is so important in this play to provide a real, believable and first-time representation every performance.”

Marble plays 8pm on February 23, 24, 28, March 2, 3, 7, 9 and 10 with 2pm matinees on February 25 and March 4.

To book tickets, call 6270 1465 or visit www.trybooking.com/SUMS.

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