(Susannah Clapp’s article appeared in the Observer, 11/22).

Paul Miller is making his Orange Tree bear the most marvellous fruit. His first production as artistic director was a very fine revival of DH Lawrence’s The Widowing of Mrs Holroyd. Now he proves he can pick a winner of a new play and match it with a young director who looks to be one of the finds (the other is My Night with Reg’s Robert Hastie) of the year.

Alistair McDowall’s Pomona is a fierce dystopian drama with terrific comic edge. It flashes from casual naturalism to gory horror, from game playing to terrible earnest, from the vatic to the casual. Pomona is a real place: a deserted island in the middle of Manchester, “a hole in the city”. To the lost souls who circle it, it also looks like the future of the world.


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