Seven Dials Playhouse
9th to 28th Jan 2023
“A savagely amusing comment on the realitiesof a career in Hollywood,Irrelevant interrogates how great artists can slip through the cracksand bright futures can besuddenly dimmed.The play centres on Millie, a once-promising young actress, who finds herself chewed up and spat out bythe cruel churn ofLa La Land. Now one of LA’s top agents,Millieis the champion she never had. But,livingvicariously through the stars she represents has a viciously entertaining way of taking its toll. Millie will be played by stage and screen stalwart Debbie Chazen. Best known for television roles as Annie in the BBC comedy The Smoking Roomand Big Claire in Mine All Mine, Chazen has also starred in Midsomer Murders, Doc Martin, Doctor Whoand Sherlock. Her theatre work includes Mother Clap’s Molly Houseat the National Theatre and Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchardat The Crucible in Sheffield. She starred as Ruth in the stage adaptation of Calendar Girlsin November 2009 and went on to originate the role of Ruth in the musical version The Girls, receiving an Olivier Award nomination for it in 2017.Written and directed by Le Gallienne Theatre Company’s Artistic Director Keith Merrill (Entertaining Mr. Sloaneand The Einstein Letter, The Other Palace), Irrelevantis a tale of how luck becomes the leading player in our stories. Le GallienneTheatre Company’s Creative Director, Guillermo Názarawill also compose the score.”
Review by Richard Lambert, 3 Stars
A fictional character, a theatrical agent, Millie Grable, played by Debbie Chazen, performs this one-woman play. Millie is an actress who moved from the UK to the USA and lands a plumb role, only to be replaced by a male star’s niece. Breaking down in Times Square with little concern from by-standers Millie persuades a friend to go for an audition, leading to fame and fortune for the friend, kick-starting Millie’s agency.
Known for her tough stance with agents and producers, Millie drinks her way through her working day.
Her office is a sumptuous design of ceiling to floor net curtains deliciously lit by Alistair Lindsay. Some beautifully colourful morphs take us from daytime into Millie’s memories of her performing days. Every now and again there will be external noise of applause and cheering from the street outside and Millie will go take a look only to return with bitter-sweet descriptions of what’s occurring.
A small lack of consistency between which speaker should be used for the telephone-on-speaker had the flown mid-stage speaker relay an early phone conversation, while later in the play, the floor speaker was the speaker-phone. And the off-stage speaker with crowd noise drowned out the script from Millie when outside of her office.
It was interesting to hear the back-stories of an agent dishing on well-known film actors. Their lives and loves and jousting for the major roles but it built to an ending that was a little too-predictable. The final applause from the audience didn’t bring Debbie Chazen back onto stage to take her bow – leaving the audience slightly bewildered.
Photo Credit: Alistair Lindsay
Dates Monday 9th January to Saturday 28th November 2023
Times Monday – Saturday 7.30pm, matinees Wednesdays and Saturdays 2.30pm
Run Time 75 Minutes with no interval
Box Office Tickets from £15 available on 020 3841 6600 or at https://www.sevendialsplayhouse.co.uk/
Location Seven Dials Playhouse, 1a Tower Street, London WC2H 9NP
How to get there
The nearest underground station are Leicester Square (Northern and Piccadilly lines), Tottenham Court Road (Elizabeth Line, Northern and Central lines) and Covent Garden (Piccadilly line). The nearest rail station is Charing Cross.
Social Twitter – @7DialsPlayhouse
Instagram – @7DialsPlayhouse
Facebook – @SevenDialsPlayhouse
Mildred Grable Debbie Chazen
Writer/Director Keith Merill
Composer Guillermo Názara
Producer Keith Merill
Le Gallienne Theatre Company
Lighting Designer Alistair Lindsay
Trigger Warnings Suicide, Swearing, Firearms, Flashing lights, Gunshot effect.