"Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. "
(Macbeth: Act V Scene V)
‘Two' by Jim Cartwright
Directed by: Richard Parish
Design by: David Hemsley-Brown
Lighting by: Nigel Greenaway
Sound by: Alex Lyon
Cast: Karen Brooks and David Webb
For a direct link to the GALLERY of PHOTOGRAPHS of this production CLICK - : Two
‘Go to laugh and be moved’ – (City Limits)
Taking place over the course of one evening in a typical Northern pub, Jim Cartwright's 'Two' features fourteen diverse characters played by just two actors. Landlord and Landlady plus various members of the local community, invite us to pull up a stool as they let us into their lives.
SURREY ADVERTISER REVIEW OF ‘TWO’ BY JEFF THOMSONTWO by the maverick Northern playwright Jin Cartwright has been translated into several languages. In English it remains a melancholic piece as it takes a bite-size look at narrow and unfulfilled lives.
The overall effect could be a tad voyeuristic because we peek at disappointment and failed aspiration but this does not occur under Richard Parish’s direction.
He offers sustained respect for the characters that happen into Cartwright’s setting of a Bolton Public House.
Two actors (Karen Brooks and David Webb) play fourteen roles in consecutive scenes which are linked by ‘the landlord and landlady’ – a device that offers continuity – and the chance of learning more about them as they snipe at each other behind the bar while offering a hollow bonhomie to the customers.
The landlord leaves to change a cask – cue the entrance of ‘Old Man’, ‘Roy’ or ‘Fred’. The landlady leaves to collect glasses – cue the entrance of ‘Old Lady’, ‘Alice’ or ‘Lesley’.
Each character had a distinct story to share, accent and walk but inevitably some seemed to me more successful than others. One scene remained with me for hours: a young couple out for an evening; she compliant and he domineering.
Webb approached this with a fixed stare of restrained malevolence while Brooks, crushed and debilitated, avoided his eye contact.
Her fear in the intimacy of the Mill Studio Theatre was palpable and spread into a stunned audience. It was heartbreakingly sad.
Other characters were in turn buoyant, introverted, reflective or happy-go-lucky.
That the landlord and landlady partly discover a way to resolve their differences brought a provocative evening to a close.
There was one curtain bow from the cast but an audience hat offered loud applause for several minutes. Not a fun evening but a satisfying one.
COMMENTS FROM OUR AUDIENCE ON ‘TWO’
We thoroughly enjoyed the performance last night – so many different characters for two people to play
Many congratulations – it was a wonderful performance and a tour-de-force by the two actors
Absolutely LOVED the play!
Thought when it opened that I would miss seeing no props but then realizing they would be impossible and seeing how BRILLIANTLY the actors mimed them, I actually forgot that there were none
I loved every episode and wanted to applaud after each one
Very, very impressive and entertaining
A magnificent first night performance
Had us all in stitches - wish I was coming again!
Thought both actors were outstanding
All characters were totally believable
David Webb was so menacing as the abusive husband - it made me feel really uncomfortable
Another great show - thank you
Brilliant show. Thanks to all of the Lighted Fools
What a way to spend a Saturday evening - two amazing actors, line perfect
Karen Brooks gave the best female performance I have seen in a very long time - we so enjoyed watching her
Wonderful direction - sound effects on the dot - all in all, a wonderful way to spend an evening
Very well done all round
Absolutely brilliant! We believed in every character and found the denouement really quite moving
Thank you very much for another great evening's entertainment - a veritable tour de force
The actors were excellent as was the direction
The various characters came across perfectly - we thought the scene with the battered wife was particularly well done
Thank you and your team once again - we have already got the next dates in our diaries!
Another tremendous production
Two actors who were great; imaginative, versatile, gifted and who kept us absobed and entertained throughout
The characters were so diverse - moving, amusing and sinister
Loved the set and no props - it worked so well
I don't think I shall ever eat crisps again without thinking of Karen Brooks’ performance and Tom Jones will forever now make me laugh!!!
I liked the subtle set, the use of space, the pace and above all the interaction between the two
We so enjoyed this evening - thank you Lighted Fools yet again
Can't wait for your next production!!!