by Zoe Erwin-Longstaff
The Collectors boasts, one of the most compelling blurbs in the Fringe brochure. Dealing with “emotional poverty and debt” the play centers on a woman, Hannah, sequestered in her apartment, accosted by collection agencies, struggling to make art amidst disorder. But the play is not really interested in it’s own conceit. It doesn’t focus on debt, or the nature of debt, or anything to do with debt.
The collectors calling Hannah, are, I imagine, extensions of her own fractured psychology – multiple personalities? Or perhaps schizophrenic projections? They are embodied in flamboyant, grotesque stereotypes, Mr. Virtue, the paternalistic sadist, Mrs. Smith, the alcoholic floozy and Mr. Maggot, the quivering wimp. Littered with smutty exchanges, Hannah propositions the men, ostensibly to make them uncomfortable enough to forget why they called, or at least to discourage them not to call back. She just ignores Mrs. Smith, whose familiar overtures she distrusts.
The Collectors is at the Toronto Fringe