There's an unfortunate earnestness to this short piece from the Bangor English Drama Society, as they attempt with both script and performance to be all grown up and serious about something that really isn't quite up to the mark.

The focus of Easter Eggs is one day in the life of a middle-class family: lawyer Andrew Dean and his wife Yvonne, a former dancer, are looking for a fresh start now that their two children are, supposedly, flying the nest– though, with Sophie just started at university and graduate musician Rory still dependent on them financially, there are a range of emotional and financial tensions on both sides of the generational gap. Throw in a little angst and sibling rivalry, and there should be plenty going on to hold the attention.

Unfortunately, there are too many distractions: the staccato of fade-to-black scene changes; a young cast with, for the most part, a limited emotional connection with either their own characters or each other; plus too many story elements deliberately placed in the drama like lighthouses (oh, the symbolism of that broken fridge!) rather than rising naturally from its narrative. That the whole familial situation is even described by one of the characters as little more than a 'hangover of adolescent anger management' is somewhat ironic, given the somewhat portentous aspirations of everyone involved.

Nominally, the excuse for the title is one of the catalysts for some mind-numbing arguments; a single Easter Egg from Rory's unseen girlfriend. (The rest of the family assume that, en route, Rory ate any other eggs he'd been asked to pass on.) Given how the script clearly makes attempts to claim some current relevance (if mentioning Facebook covers that), it's a shame that there's no obvious attempt to riff off a more modern meaning of the term – Easter Egg as a secret, hidden extra often found on DVDs and Blu-Ray discs. The nearest we get is towards the close when Rory is persuaded to sing a new song he's learned. It seems to be a reminder to the other characters of his good points, but unfortunately comes far too late for the audience to really care.

Reviews by Paul F Cockburn

Multiple Venues

Nests

★★★
Dundee Rep Theatre / Macrobert Arts Centre

The Yellow on the Broom

★★★
Underbelly, Bristo Square

Tom Neenan: It's Always Infinity

★★★★
Assembly George Square Studios

Police Cops in Space

★★★★★
Gilded Balloon Rose Theatre

Rik Carranza: Still a Fan

★★★★
Gilded Balloon Rose Theatre

Marmite

★★★★

Performances

The Blurb

Sophia has started her first year of university; Rory is trying to make a living with his guitar. Both have returned to their parents’ house on Easter Sunday where family problems, which simmered after teenage years, suddenly resurface.