Meet Me At Dawn @ Traverse Theatre

Zinnie Harris's new play is an eerie, touching reflection on grief

Review by Cat Acheson | 09 Aug 2017

Playwright Zinnie Harris’s new work is not for the faint-hearted, but then again, few things in life are. A probing exploration of grief and the way it wrecks havoc in our lives, Meet Me at Dawn dares to tread on ground that is almost too terrible for words.

After a boating accident, two women find themselves washed ashore on a strange island where the rules of the familiar world no longer apply. It’s an unexplained pocket of liminal space in which an intense and challenging story can play out. The audience share every bit of the claustrophobia and desperation of the characters, as they struggle to make sense of their situation and the huge weight of the unsaid.

Everything about the play is eerie; from its opening lines of stilted dialogue, to its flirtation with amnesia, to the truly haunting performances of Sharon Duncan-Brewster and Neve McIntosh. And yet it is so much more than a straightforward psychological thriller. Meet Me at Dawn slowly reveals itself to be a touching portrait of love with all of its frustrations, small joys, and quiet moments of wonder.

The loss of such a love, the play tells us, is something that can’t be easily understood using any of the faculties we possess, and although the play is a little lacking in resolution, it rings true to the insurmountable challenge of coming to terms with such a devastating experience. This is a play that will leave audiences shaken and moved by its undeniable rawness.  

Meet Me At Dawn, Traverse Theatre, until 27 Aug (not 14 or 21), various times, £21.50