A handful of digits is a celebration when people high-five each other. But in Robin Fulford's poetic, expressive Five Fingers, that hand is used in a gesture of anger that shreds a marriage.
In WeWillMeet Productions's site-specific production, the audience is an invisible observer in the apartment of Tuck, Anna and their baby, Henry. Following the parents around several rooms and occasionally out onto the street, we watch the pressure build until, in a moment of anger, Tuck lashes out at his wife.
But that's hardly the whole story. At the start, they're a sharing, loving couple involved in a dance of amorous pleasure. Director Tom Arthur Davis and actors Chala Hunter and Nathan Barrett bring physical passion to Fulford's imagistic text, one that underlines both the strengths and weaknesses in the relationship.
As in many multi-location productions, you create your own play depending on whom you follow. The text is filled with monologues, inner reflections on the past or present, and depending on whether you stick with Anna or Tuck, you get a different viewpoint on who they are. What's tantalizing, since the apartment is small, is that you get the occasional bleed of words from another room.
The intimacy of the setting also means we're literally right next to a lot of the action, and the characters often turn an audience member into a confidant. There are some moments when Anna and Tuck are silhouettes in a dark room; at others, you can watch one person in a mirror and have the other looking you in the eye. Since the different perspectives from which to watch are all compelling, it's impossible not to be pulled into what's going on, both physically and emotionally.
The production's energy often runs at a high pitch, and the anger the two characters feel is palpable; so, though, is their initial affection and later regret at what happens.
The result is a powerful 50 minutes in the lives of a couple driven apart by abuse.