Raton Laveur

Raton Laveur – meaning raccoon – is an original, bold, black comedy brought to us by Australian theatre company Fairly Lucid Productions, who are making their debut at the Edinburgh Festival this year. This play centres around Lily and Phil, an Australian couple who have just re-located to Toronto. Lily is the responsible breadwinner who has just started work at an advertising firm; Phil is more childlike and disorganised and has become increasingly paranoid about a nest of raccoons living behind the crêperie where he works. When first introduced to these characters, it takes a while for the audience to determine whether they are lovers or brother and sister as Lily is very maternal towards Phil, guiding him through life.

Explores themes of unconditional love, relationships and consequences.

The play opens with Phil played earnestly by Ben Noble at home in Lily’s dressing gown hiding out in a fort made from cardboard boxes. Lily, played by Wendy Bos, comes home from work dressed in professional wear to a mess wondering what has happened. What has happened, indeed? It is the story that this dark comedy sets out to tell. The play is a thriller with a dark twist that leaves the audience in shock and suspense. This piece of new writing by Amos Crawley, David Patrick Fleming and Caitlin Stewart is unique, dark and evocative. It encourages the audience to think outside the box and exposes us to new ideas.

There are a few deeply uncomfortable moments in this show which are thankfully recovered by humour which provides some comic relief for the audience. Noble and Bos both deliver excellent performances and do a wonderful job at tackling the material in this courageous piece. This play explores themes of unconditional love, relationships and consequences. It is hard to describe this show further without giving too much away as the plot twist is the linchpin of this piece. I found this play a little far-fetched at times although I think that is what the writers are trying to achieve. However, saying that, it is definitely worth a watch and is a good example of ambitious new writing at this year’s Fringe.  

Reviews by Lynn Rusk

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Performances

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The Blurb

Phil and Lily have moved to Toronto from Australia to pursue Lily's dreams. Phil, finding himself at loose ends, becomes obsessed with the nest of raccoons living behind the crêperie where he works. As Phil descends deeper into paranoia things take a violent turn, and Lily is left cleaning up the mess. Raton Laveur is a comedy about love, relationships, and knives that cut through bone. 'Comedies don't get much blacker than this. Best Theatre' **** (Advertiser, Adelaide). 'Tar-black comedic two-hander' ***** (Now Magazine). 'Blood-drippingly marvellous!' **** (RipItUp.com.au)

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