Tucked away in a quiet corner of surgeons hall is a play which comes to the Fringe all the way from South Africa. Its quiet, unassuming nature belies what is a powerhouse of emotion, conviction and theatre which challenges the mind and the heart in equal measure.
This is a play focused on the exploration of sexuality as told from the compassionate viewpoint of a drama teacher/director who is working with his pupil to master the art of delivering a Shakespearean sonnet on stage. Whilst we never get to know the name of the characters we are aware that we are watching the life of the drama teacher either here in the present day or in the past through costume change.
Both Nicholas Campbell and Oskar Brown shine as tennagers journeying through sexuality. Their discovery of the stimulation of pornography leads them to experiment with each other. Campbell is a brave actor to go naked so early in the play but it really works within the context of the story and never felt as though it were a shock tactic. The story deepens in many ways and the scene that involves the discussion of male rape, whether genuine or staged for mutual satisfaction is a very disturbing moment.
The study of human psyche is always interesting as it’s true that what we are today is clearly a product of our past. The link to Shakespeare is very pertinent as the rules of falling in love, loving someone else or being loved have not changed since the time of Shakespeare to where we are now in the 2013 Fringe.
The only negative thing about the play is some of the sound cues are too hasty and at times very sharp which makes the storyline jar a little bit on occasion. However, this might sort itself out as the show beds into its run.
It is wonderful that there are no restrictions as to what can be performed at the Fringe. This production fills that adage perfectly with excellent performances and tight direction. This is a show which is very adult and very engrossing.