Butterfly in Shades of Blue

Butterfly in Shades of Blue follows two characters through 17 years of their lives; the audience is privy to the life-changing conversations which occur between the couple. From their first exchange, through to their marriage and then to their inevitable divorce before reuniting, the plot is predictable and fairly unexciting. That being said, there are some nice moments in the script which allow the audience time for contemplation. The play is however, in my opinion, far too long at an hour and a half. Due to the recognisable narrative, the play could have produced a greater impact if the writing was tighter and the ideas more skillfully represented.

It was relatable and there were moments of real charm but it seemed to push the point of fragile relationships for a little too long.

This is a two-hander and both actors are required to present the two characters over 17 years of their lives. Casting this was no doubt a nightmare for director Allan Wilcox, whose simple but effective direction allowed the narrative to unfold without any further confusion. Wilcox made the decision to use older actors (not the 16-/17-year-olds first presented) to play the parts; although this was appropriate and well executed by Ceri Bostock, who playedVicky, it seemed a little uncomfortable for Iago McGuire who was clearly more suitable for the older character portrayal.

The setting was simple, just a table and chairs. The scene changes were desperately slow though, as the actors were expected to change costume completely to represent a different point in their lives. This made the whole piece feel like it lacked any real energy. Both Bostock and McGuire held their characters well and had clearly worked hard to bring them to life. The two actors held the audience for an hour and a half so there was lots of work for them to do.

I wish this play had been half the length. It was relatable and there were moments of real charm but it seemed to push the point of fragile relationships for a little too long.

Reviews by Lyndsey Bakewell

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★★★
SpaceCabaret @ 54

Butterfly in Shades of Blue

★★
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Performances

Location

The Blurb

Spanning a period of 17 years, Butterfly in Shades of Blue is a romantic comedy-drama which follows Stephen and Vicky when they first meet and then as they fall in and out of love. The play is a bittersweet study of how their relationship changes over the years due to differing aspirations. Their initial high hopes and idealistic principles, something that many of us harbour in our youth, somehow evaporate in the heat of unbridled ambition, conceit, deceit and the realities of everyday life. The play is in turns very funny and achingly poignant.