Straight to the Heart (4 Stars)

Straight to the Heart
Above the Arts, 10 to 28th Oct 2016
Monday to Friday at 1pm

Review by Richard Lambert, 4 Stars ****

“Bringing lunchtime theatre back to the West End, director Alex Dmitriev directs three heartfelt and provocative short plays by American playwright Ken Jaworowski.

In each play, the characters’ alternating monologues lead you on an unexpected journey. Pulse – a son tells of confronting his father about his sexuality; a father teaches his son to stand up to bullies with lasting consequences; and a daughter takes her father on one last trip. One to the Head, One to the Heart – a father’s dream of a large family is set aside by the financial burden of caring for a disabled child, or is it? The Truth Tellers – a night out for two lonely people, will their lies keep them apart”?

Playwright Ken Jaworowski
Director Alex Dmitriev
Alistair Brown, Nadia Shash and Daniel Simpson


Three brilliant scripts, three amazing actors and three chairs, going to see Straight to the Heart was a lunchtime well spent. The stories are spellbinding and deliberately throw some curveballs that never give away the ending. Alistair Brown, Nadia Shash and Daniel Simpson give incredible performances and are foot perfect leaders for these journeys into their lives.

The 1st play “Pulse” uses all three actors to tell their individual stories which have a common theme of a human pulse. “One to the Head, One to the Heart” shows 2 people considering mistakes that would have enormous consequences. Gripping stuff. While “The Truth Tellers” exposes the destructive influence self-doubt and lack of self-belief can inflict and the fleeting opportunities that might easily pass unnoticed. Surprisingly there is little interaction between the actors and very little movement around the stage, but despite this simple structure their stories and their delivery of the script simply zing. These three plays and the actors are outstanding!

You’ll find moments that touch your heart, moments that grip and a huge chunk of relevance to all of us.

This is a show with very limited technical and design, however, it’s tastefully done with a couple of costume changes and a few lighting cues (lighting by A J Hardie) that are timed perfectly into the pace of the script. It works by non-intrusion.

With the performance starting at 1.05pm and finishing at 1.55pm this is the perfect lunchtime treat if you work in Central London. Worth popping out to see this piece of theatre!

A thought-provoking play performed by three actors who are masters of their craft.


Running Time 75 mins
Venue Above the Arts Theatre, Great Newport Street, London WC2H 7JB
Ticket Price £12/£10 (concessions)
Box Office Arts Theatre West End Click here, 020 7836 8463