The Treatment, which opened in 1993, has often been seen as a home-grown response to John Guare’s Six Degrees of Separation, which had been a hit one year previous.

Set in New York, the play tells the story of Anne, a young woman whose husband, Simon, likes to tie her up and silence her with tape while telling her of ‘the beauty of the world’.

She decides to leave him and soon meets two film producers, Jennifer and Andrew who become interested in making a film of her story.  They hire scriptwriter Clifford who turns this reality into a voyeuristic fantasy for his own purpose. Meanwhile, Andrew finds himself increasingly drawn to Anne. The film develops into something that little resembles the original. The story ends after it has travelled full-circle back to Anne bound and gagged on a bed.

The urban cacophonous setting lends itself to the story, which soon becomes eccentric and outrageous with the gauging out of Clifford’s eye with a fork and the shooting of Anne by a panicked Jennifer. The Treatment was the winner of the 1993 John Whiting Award.

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