CTW at the Old Court Theatre
An end-of-season treat at the Old Court, a raw, rough-and-ready rom-com that follows two thirty-somethings through a “legendary lost weekend” in Edinburgh.
David Greig's engaging two-hander had something of a hit at the Traverse a few years ago; this production, directed by Lynne Foster, with Caroline Blom Brown, is a welcome chance for southerners to see it.
Medium Bob [Barry Taylor], piss-artist and very-small-time crook who once dreamed of rock-star fame, chances upon Helena, a divorce lawyer [Caroline Dunsmuir]. The fast and furious drama follows them from their first drunken night together [with running commentary] to a crazy orgy of spending, a picaresque romp through the capital's streets, Cathedral steps to IKEA car-park, encountering Goth kids, Japanese bondage, dancing lobsters and the man from Oddbins. There's a Q&A, bizarre “philosophical underpinnings”, a walk-on for Elmo from Sesame Street and a name-check for Kim Wilde, landscape gardener.
This is a play with music, so the story is glossed by some quirky original songs by Gordon McIntyre, with Taylor on guitar. The lyrics are in the programme, as well as a handy map of the city centre...
Both performances are very impressive, with excellent accents - maybe the social gulf between them could have been wider, though. Dunsmuir, who spends much of the time in a bridesmaid's dress, also gets to play a bone-headed underworld boss and her own young nephew, amongst other roles. A simple black-walled setting, with the vertical bed neatly echoed by the bondage cat's cradle opposite. Breathless pursuits through the not very chase-friendly auditorium add to the fun.
A worthwhile new play, in a fine production. Let's hope Midsummer is a good omen for CTW's new season, which opens on September 15 with Arnold Ridley's Ghost Train.