19:30, Thu 16th February 2017 - Sat 18th February 2017 at Fitzpatrick Hall, Queens' College
Lent Week 4
"When you're between any kind of devil and the deep blue sea, the deep blue sea sometimes looks very inviting."
The play opens with Hester Collyer's first suicide attempt: originally written as a one-act play in which she was successful, Rattigan ultimately found it more appealing to explore the psyche of a person on the precipice of despair. Hester has left her well-off and kindly husband William in favour of the desirable yet emotionally reticent Freddie, and now finds herself trapped in a loveless relationship without an escape route. She cannot fathom going back to her husband but when Freddie forgets her birthday she can no longer cope with her current relationship. The only exit she sees is taking her own life but, after some bracing advice from the enigmatic and stoic Mr Miller, she finds herself willing to reconsider.
Rattigan's masterpiece and, in the words of Libby Purves, "a bit of a game-changer" when it is first seen or read, The Deep Blue Sea is a challenging and provocative play, encouraging social responsibility and taking an unsentimental but compassionate stance on mental health.