Not About Heroes, West Acre

ALISON CROOSE This was a significant production for it marks a personal triumph for director Matt Markham and its subject is especially poignant in a world seemingly on the brink of war.

ALISON CROOSE

This was a significant production for it marks a personal triumph for director Matt Markham and its subject is especially poignant in a world seemingly on the brink of war.

The play by Stephen Macdonald, performed by Raw Egg Productions, focuses on the friendship between Siegfried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen, first world war poets who met as serving officers in a hospital for nervous disorders in Scotland in 1917.

They found that the horrors of the battlefield had inflamed their shared disgust of war and drove them to seek solace through verse. Their letters, diaries and poems were used to create a compelling insight into the relationship between two soldiers from contrasting backgrounds.

The play put great demands on Christopher Naylor as Sassoon and Matthew Grist as Owen but both gave extremely sympathetic, assured and controlled performances. A simple but effective set created a sombre atmosphere.

This highly charged experience was harrowing for the River Studios audience but the actors' ability and Matt Markham's direction ensured an absorbing and entertaining evening.

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