Writing a show is a difficult enough task; to then both act and direct said show is worthy of a titan. Indeed, the words ‘Writer, Director and Performer’ initially stirred misgivings, but it happily turns out that an iconic bus seat and pile of old tickets are all that Molly Taylor needs to hook our attention.
National Theatre of Scotland presents Love Letters to the Public Transport System by Molly Taylor, to give it its full listed and incredibly catchy title, is a one woman show celebrating the unsung heroics of the drivers of our buses, trains, and those mythical trams that we’ve heard so much about in Edinburgh. Following the stories of three characters, Molly narrates a powerful monologue of love, tears and heartfelt desperation on their part. To captivate an audience singlehandedly with a story is a tall order and it took a while to get into the feel of things; the beginning seemed a bit awkward and the eloquent words initially too much for Taylor to control. Performing at dinner-time also provides the task of distracting the audience from their stomachs and at times a desire for food perhaps won the battle for attention.
Yet soon, both audience and performer grew in confidence with how proceedings were going and the stories came to life. Molly Taylor managed to bring great energy to her performance with mere inclinations of the voice and simple gestures that spoke a thousand words, making her performance highly animated. She was so entertaining that the used ticket machine next to her could probably have started tap-dancing and the captive audience would have been none the wiser.
Catch the bus to George Street and allow Molly Taylor to indoctrinate you into an appreciation for an everyday convenience you barely notice. It might make your bus ride home a more momentous occasion.