Love, Lies and Taxidermy

We begin with a boy meeting a girl. Valentine (you’ll never guess his birthday), the son of a Polish taxidermist, meets Ash, the daughter of a debt-ridden Tutti Frutti man, outside a medical research facility in the small Welsh town of Merthyr Tydfil. It all proceeds to get a bit improbable, but this delightfully quirky love story triumphs on the back of Alan Harris' fantastically funny script and an artfully directed, engaging ensemble.

George Perrin’s direction is slick, assured, and wholly mesmerising.

Remy Beasley and Andy Rush play Ash and Valentine respectively, amongst other roles as required. Rush brings the classic rom-com, slightly awkward, grand-gesture-inclined protagonist that is Valentine to life with charm and polish; Beasley, meanwhile, is a magnetic presence, a frequent scene-stealer, exhibiting faultless comic timing and a gift for subtle characterisation.

The third cast member, Richard Corgan, mops up a lot of the secondary characters. He’s put through his paces in terms of multi-roling and inhabiting wildly disparate roles, sometimes back to back. But Corgan meets the challenge with ease: as the well-meaning, eternally nervous Mr Tutti Frutti, the laconic, diehard romantic Jakob (Val’s Polish father), and as the weaselly, snivelling porn director Maxi, he is utterly essential to a great deal of the show’s most humorous and heartfelt scenes.

Harris’ script retains a light touch in moments of off-the-wall comedy and sincere tenderness alike: heartstrings are tugged and funny bones tickled with considerable skill. And even when it deals with not-unserious subject matter, the writing is nimble, tackling such issues with incisive, hilarious wit.

George Perrin’s direction is slick, assured, and wholly mesmerising. The three actors glide around the stage, switching seamlessly between lively shared-line narration and vibrantly acted scenes. Light, entertaining and unfailingly enchanting, Love, Lies and Taxidermy is pure pleasure — a production governed by a breathless momentum that sweeps you up, in a flurry of lilting Welsh accents, into its utterly charming story.

Reviews by Jamie P Robson

Pleasance Dome

Often Onstage

★★★
Underbelly, Cowgate

Zach & Viggo: Thunderflop

★★★★
Pleasance Courtyard

Omid Djalili: Schmuck for a Night

★★★
Assembly Roxy

Chopping Chillies

★★★★
C venues - C nova

Communicate

Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now

Performances

Location

The Blurb

This is a boy meets girl story. Son of a Polish taxidermist meets daughter of a failing ice cream salesman at a medical research facility in Merthyr Tydfil. First date in Tesco and things are going well. But it's difficult to fall in love when your parents need saving from themselves, their weird hobbies and the threat of a prison sentence. An offbeat love story about Mr. Tutti Frutti, a stuffed owl and the struggle to fit in from writer Alan Harris (BBC Radio 4, National Theatre Wales, Sherman Cymru).

Most Popular See More

The Book of Mormon

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Matilda the Musical

From £25.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Life of Pi

From £19.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Mary Poppins

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Play That Goes Wrong

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Hairspray

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets