What if everything you’re ever known was thrown into question? And everything you ever trusted was subjected to doubt? When San Diego housewife Karen Ruiz’s husband is accused of being a terrorist, she endeavours to clear his name. Can she maintain her faith in her husband, her marriage and her government? Or will she find that the only person she can believe in is herself?
The new political thriller The American Wife, co-written by New York Times best-selling author Ralph Pezzullo and playwright Stephen Fife, has just had its world premiere at the Park Theatre where, at a post-show Q&A held last night (13 September 2016), I was able to quiz the American co-authors before they flew home to Los Angeles today.
We were joined at the Q&A by title star and co-producer Julia Eringer (as Julia) as well as the rest of the cast – Vidal Sancho (Eduardo Ruiz), George Taylor (Mark Loomis), Emilio Doorgasingh (Dr Hassan), Mitchell Mullen (Sam Roberts), Anne Wittman (Amanda Bradley), Sanee Ravel (Ahmed), Sophie Angelson (Mertin) and child actor Sascha Petrou (Taylor) – as well as designers Max Blackman (lighting) and Zahra Mansouri (set and costumes).
Is the ‘war on terror’ a valid term? What does the USA Patriot Act stand for (bet you didn’t know it’s an acroynm!)? What exactly is ‘rendition’ and is it ever justified? Why are Americans abroad so often naive or arrogant? (A question asked by an audience member by the way!) Is the timing of the production with the 15th anniversary of 9/11 coincidental? How were members of the company (several of them from New York, including the writers) affected by the attacks on the World Trade Center?
The American Wife continues at London’s Park Theatre until 1 October 2016.
— Terri Paddock (@TerriPaddock) September 13, 2016
Event photography by Peter Jones.