Constellations – Nick Payne

Synopsis

Suppose that life exists in a multiverse — a set of parallel existences that contain infinitely different futures. The possibilities in our lives are, quite literally, endless. Every possible event that could happen, does happen, in one universe or another. And if two lovers meet — are drawn together in every version of existence — every possible happy ending and heartbreak that could befall them, will.

Marianne, a physicist, and Roland, a beekeeper, meet at a party. They hit it off, and go for a drink. Or perhaps they don’t. They go home together, or maybe they go their separate ways. Perhaps Marianne is engaged to someone else, perhaps Roland is. Maybe she breaks his heart, maybe he breaks hers. Perhaps they come together and their love story can finally take root and grow, or perhaps it will be tragically cut short. Nick Payne’s beautiful play, Constellations, explores how even the smallest change in our lives can dramatically alter the course we take. It is a spellbinding exploration of love, science, quantum theory, and infinite possibility for heartbreak or for hope.

Review

My lecturer recommended this play and it became on of those books you place at the back of your bookcase and forget about. During a recent clear out… I came across this play and decided to give it a go. I deeply regret not reading it sooner!

I have read numerous reviews that focus on the repetition throughout the play as something they disliked and found irritating to read, however without it, the play would not make sense. I loved the idea of having multiple universes and possibilities. The concept that free will may not exist is not something that we often think about therefore it created an interesting twist.

The two characters, Roland and Marianne, are quite a normal couple. They fall in love and fight. They make up and marry. Each time a new chapter of their lives begins we see the situation not only from both perspectives but also with differences in personality. They have an argument throughout the play and in one case it was Marianne in the wrong. In a parallel universe, it is Roland who is in the wrong. The interesting thing was that in each scenario the outcome was either the same or similar.

The dialogue throughout this play carries so much emotion that you cannot help but want to know what happens to both the characters at the very end. I believe this play is like marmite – you either love it or hate it!

Rating -⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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