The Enigma story, remained a secret for decades.
BREAKING THE CODE is
excellent and Alan Turing true story
is a Code Breaker
In the fall of 2014 the semi Biofilm of Alan Turing was released called the IMITATION GAME. It received positive reviews and earned its lead Benedict Cumberbatch, an Oscar nomination. The play version BREAKING THE CODE explores the deeper sexuality in the man Turing. Originally played in 1986 by Derek Jacobi in the West End - the Tony winning play took London by storm. Now we get to enjoy this poignant story about a man who broke many taboo’s.
Hugh Whitemore’s play takes place during Turing’s life between 1929 and 1954 exploring his own battle hiding his sexuality and working for Churchill during WWII breaking the Nazi’s Enigma code. Churchill mentioned many times that his code discovery was the key to winning that war.
Theatre Rhinoceros company headed by artistic director John Fisher, who plays Turing, and also directed this superb theatre to bring this story to the Eureka stage in SF. The cast is wonderful and the 2 hour story is clearly as important today as it was in the late 80’s.
Alan Turing the father of commuter science and the centerpiece of the story in brilliantly performed by John Fisher - is a tour de force on stage - playing Alan from his teen years to his final years in the 50’s. Fisher plays this man with a spark that Turing may have felt, he is impressive and on stage most of the two hours.
Patrick Ross plays the policeman, Mick Ross, who finally prosecutes Turing. From the outset his dark and suspicious side was a shade obvious, but not in a bad way. Fabel brings an undertone of sympathy and hope for a different outcome, but history won’t allow that and Fabel knows it.
Similarly Celia Maurice as Alan’s mother brings a loving softness to a character who must remain in the dark for far too long. Kirsten Peacock as the young woman who falls in love with Alan does a marvelous job walking a delicate line. She never goes overboard and she never goes below-decks either, but she manages a mighty mean center line throughout.
Peacock is also the assistant director, taking some of the pressure off Fisher. Heren Parel plays both of Turing’s lovers, a school-chum named Christopher Morcom and a young Greek named Nikos. He plays both of them beautifully, but simply, with honesty. Val Hendrickson plays the man Turing works for Dillwyn Knox, his mentor, and whom he respects. His scene in Act Two where he lectures the younger Alan on morals and mores was extremely well played.
As the young guy Ron Miller, who gets Alan in trouble and wins Turing’s love and trust in exchange for money is played by Justin Lucas who gives an excellent and truthful performance, he is a pro on stage. Michael DeMartini is cast as John Smith the mysterious man from the “Ministry”.
“Breaking the Code” was a best play in its day 1986, and it still registers strongly as an excellent play and Alan’s story now on the screen is finally being told to many more. Its important that you catch the final weeks of this short run.
Congrats to the cast and the amazing performance by the Rhino’s creative heart and soul Mr. John Fisher.
Breaking The Code by Hugh Whitemore
Directed by John Fisher
March 4 - 21, 2015 - Limited Engagement - 15 Performances Only!
Wed. - Sat. - 8:00 pm / Sat. Matinees - 3:00 pm Previews - Wed. – Sat. March. 4 - 6, 2015 (8 pm) / Sat. March 7, 2015 – 3:00 pm Opening Night - Sat. March 7, 2015 - 8:00 pm Eureka Theatre in SF
Photo’s by David Wilson