NEWPORT Playgoers Society opened Neville’s Island at the Dolman Theatre on Tuesday, showing the magic of theatre with an outstanding set that instantly transported the audience to Rampsholme Island. 

The story centres around four middle-management, middle-aged men who cause themselves to become ‘shipwrecked’ on the island during a team-building exercise in the Lake District: Neville. 

The cast did well to develop their characters in this dialogue-driven play, with multi issues being raised through the course of their ‘survival’: relationships, mental illness, death and marriage, amongst others.

There were some comedic moments that had the audience laughing out loud, such as Gordon’s re-appearance, his face covered in mud, at the end of his “tether”, or the attempt to divide a sausage using a machete.

But the central focus of the play has to be the set itself. The island, complete with real trees, a cliff top and surrounded by actual water, with expert lighting and sound, provided the perfect backdrop to this modern tale of male survival. 

Neville’s Island is running January 16-20.

Julie Benson