The Cut is the story of Paul, the dystopia he lives in, and a streamlined system of oppression with a monstrous, throbbing pain at its core.
In a government office, surrounded by administrative forms and directives, Paul administers the Cut. He isn’t used to doing it to someone so keen, but John is impatient, he’s fantasised about it, about emptiness, about being… free. Disarmed by John’s enthusiasm for the incredible pain of the Cut, Paul’s bureaucratic armour cracks to reveal a man tortured by his profession and by society’s disgust. Paul’s conversations with his wife - who doesn’t know what he does but only that he can’t stop crying - and finally with his son are sparse and serrated, as he struggles with his conscience and with his horror.
Ravenhill’s dark unspeakable symbol gives this story of oppression an indefinable and irresistible force.
The Cut premiered in 2006 at the Donmar Warehouse, London.