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The Theatreguide.London Review

Ages Of The Moon
Vaults  Theatre  Autumn 2019

There is much that is familiar in Sam Shepard's Ages of the Moon. There is the easy conversational realism of men talking about their past and of the women in their lives.

They sit outside a grim-looking wooden shack, rarely moving from their seats, except to occasionally bicker and fight. The play opens with a clip from the song Have You Ever Been Lonely, which is about as close to a theme that we will get.

Byron has travelled across the country to be with his friend of fifty years Ames, when 'like a fiend you called at three in the morning like a howling dog.'

Ames has been kicked out of his home by his wife, after she found a note from a young woman, a woman Ames can't even remember.

But then these men can't remember much about the women they constantly refer to in vague sexual terms.

And if they remember, they occasionally bicker about the memories, with Ames angrily asking Byron 'Why do you keep trying to insinuate yourself into my past?'

If the setting and the drift of their conversation is downbeat, the gently amusing old style male banter, brilliantly performed by Joseph Marcell as Byron and Christopher Fairbank as Ames, lifts the mood if not the politics.

But the script is superficial, with little purpose beyond the drink-fuelled talk of aged men, with no apparent future and poorly remembered stories from their past.

Keith McKenna

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Review -  Ages Of The Moon - Vaults Theatre 2019