Review: How My Light is Spent, Sherman

How My Light is Spent, Sherman, Wednesday 17th May, reviewer: Tom Morris

Last month’s stellar play Killology was always going to be a hard act to follow, but this short and sweet effort has mostly pulled it off. Featuring Rhodri Meilir (him out of Pride) and Alexandria Riley as two main characters (and a bunch of side characters besides), How My Light Is Spent takes place on a crowded stage suspended by four sturdy ropes, the two sides of the audience facing each other.

The two main characters play seemingly forgotten people. They’ve both been “around the block” and main man Jimmy is convinced he is literally disappearing, one body part at a time. The invisible star of the play is Newport, with many a jibe at how downmarket Wales’ easternmost city is. Admittedly, as the play is being shown in Cardiff, it seems a bit like bullying- if the love didn’t seem so genuine, that is.

Ultimately it was difficult to decipher the play’s meaning. This may be a good thing as it may have an impact more profound than initially obvious. The story is not particularly special, and seems restricted due to every character being played by just two actors- a good job then that the actors are so well skilled.

Overall, How My Light Is Spent is a funny play, a relaxing hour long, that never gets too intense. South Wales lifers like myself will probably get more out of it than your average English student who doesn’t know the area as well, but again that’s far from a bad thing. It may also speak to anyone who feels like they’re just letting life pass them by- one line that resonated with me as a social science student was delivered in Kitty’s winning monologue at the play’s close.

by Tom Morris