Duncan Graham’s Dreams in White is a play of great power and frightening vision, telling or retelling the story of a sordid murder in order to investigate the trajectory of identity and desire in a world relentlessly bent on controlling and eliminating each of them. A young woman searches for the truth of her father’s disappearance and death, only to discover his double, or even multiple lives, exploding her conception of who he was and exposing the ugly core of predatory sexuality driving him. Harsh and violent language frame a world of impoverished meaning where all are exposed as lacking any real core at all, and this is emphasised by the bold stylistic choice to have each actor play multiple roles, pressing home the point that no one here is what they appear to be, but only what they hope we will take them for in order to get what they want.
Confronting and challenging, the play is underlain by a sophisticated philosophical understanding that gives it great resonance in a world of disintegrating values and discredited morals. This is a world of dangerous appearances and futile attempts to dispel them because in the end, none of it is real, it’s all theatre, and there is no truth except the truth of death where, as Graham quotes Agamben, ‘their shame can finally rest in peace’.