Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh
We have reached the end of the autumn season of A Play, A Pie and a Pint at the Traverse theatre. It’s a great concept: one hour of a new, freshly minted play plus a tasty pie and drink of choice. The underlying theme this time round has been the feeling of coming home, reconnecting, making peace with the past.
This week the play is Disfunction by Kate Bowen, which takes a cynical look at today’s viscous game show culture which thrives on emotional exposure and hard hitting truths. The two Maureens of Scottish theatre (Beattie and Carr) come together as sisters who have spent years honing their home produced game that gets straight to the jugular and aims to wound. Dire financial circumstances and the threat of losing their home lead them to put their game in the hands of their media savvy goddaughter Tanya, who has arranged a test view for the possible global launch of the game with much monetary potential. It’s funny, gutsy, and raises the question – how low do we go for financial security? How hateful and demeaning can we be?
Other plays in the series have been equally thought provoking. One of the best was Meetings With The Monk, a semi-autobiographical one-hander from Brian James O’Sullivan. This was a master class in nuanced self-presentation, taking his own experience of depression on an uplifting path of gentle healing with much humour and thoughtful insights.
It’s been an enjoyable season, too soon ended. Roll on Spring