Monday, 4 June 2012

My Gay Best Friend (theatre)

'For one night only', My Gay Best Friend is coming to the Underground Theatre in February. The new play, written by Nigel Fairs, was well-received at last year's Brighton Fringe where it sold out all its performances Upstairs at Three And Ten and it has also been performed at the Lamb Theatre in Eastbourne. The performance is on the 14th, Valentine's Day, so could be a welcome antidote to excess soppiness!

The two hander stars Louise Jameson (Doc Martin, Doctor Who) as Rachel and Nigel as the eponymous Gay Best Friend, Gavin. You might have seen him in the darker play In Conversation With An Acid-Bath Murderer, also at the Underground, or more recently seen the results of his directorship with the wonderful Secret Honour.

Rachel is a brassy, bolshy fifty-something would-be diva who is about to make her triumphant stage debut and escape her day job at Boots. But tragedy strikes in the form (or rather the absence) of her friend, Gavin who has not turned up to support the most important karaoke performance of Rachel's life. Gavin does have a good reason - he is sitting in a walk-in wardrobe in Hurstpierpoint about to father a child for two lesbians! Meanwhile, the furious Rachel has locked herself in the Ladies.

Louise thinks that the character is fun to play because she doesn't hold back. “I adore Rachel. She’s funny, she’s feisty, she’s troubled and in many ways she’s everything I’d like to be. She says it like it is, takes no nonsense and she’s incredibly rude!"

Although, on the surface, the play appears to be a light comedy, it becomes darker as it draws the audience in. Louise says “It is a frivolous, camp comedy in many respects but it’s quite profound as well. It helps us understand the value of friendship, of loving someone warts and all, of knowing their dark side and accepting it.”

Contains strong language and adult humour.

Underground Theatre, Thu 14th Feb, 19:00.
Tickets £10, available online, by calling 0845 680 1926, or in person at the Underground Theatre and the Tourist Information Office.

1 comment:

  1. Very pleased we both went to My Gay Best Friend last night. The Under Ground was nearly full with a good atmosphere and the play was the perfect anti-schmaltz for Valentine’s Day.

    Essentially a tale of a friendship, MGBF starts light and funny before slowly taking its audience to much darker places. It retains a black humour that prevents it turning morbid and kept me engrossed throughout. We learn what has drawn these two very different people together, how their friendship gives each strength and also, perversely, how too much revelation begins to drive them apart.

    Both Gavin and Racquel are fully believable characters, very real and painfully human, and the play is paced so as not to lose interest for a second. I could happily have stayed in their company for much longer. Their warmth and bickering came across as a true friendship which is so difficult to portray naturally and I am impressed with the way Louise Jameson controls her audience. At one point as Racquel’s voice softened and quietened to impart a confidentiality, I believe we all held our breath & leaned in so not to miss a word.

    Only downside is that MGBF was in Eastbourne for one night only. So if you missed it and spot a performance at another venue, make sure you get yourself a ticket. Great theatre!