Kids Play - theSpace @ Niddry St.

5
Wed, 15th Aug 18
Boys of the Empire Productions

What an engrossing piece of work from Glenn Chandler, creator of Taggart. Theo isa 17 year old gay student who visits married businessman Greg. Their agreed transaction goes through more twists than a twisty thing which we are requested not to reveal. So... Checklist: Pyjamas, teddy bear, money, train ticket, pills, handcuffs, bottle ofbooze, hotel room, jealous wife, colleagues next door. What could possibly happen? Do they need a safe word? And will it be respected?

Clement Charles shines with the eagerness of his character. He is a delight to watchthroughout as he reveals more of his intentions and desires, bouncing around Greg's room with impudent curiousity. Gareth Watkins gives Greg power and gravitas as the two prowl around each other in his hotel room. He had called off their encounter and showsa delicate balance of desire and annoyance when Theo turns up unexpectedly. They almost get close, but intimacy escapes them. Laughs and gasps of surprise come regularly as more is revealed. The twists are many but perfectly credible and build to a satisfyingclimax. Chandler as director varies the pace and makes the most of the visual opportunities in the minimal hotel room set.

Is it sad that the ending made this old reviewer cry? I must be going soft. But no,its a sign of the skill with which these actors present Chandler's script.

Charles and Chandler discussed ideas at last year's fringe and those ideas becameKid's Play. Chandler has delivered the twists he envisaged and Charles ends up in handcuffs, so I hope they are both happy. Someone should text Marty and tell him this story about the things a lonely boy will do for love is a cracking piece of finely crafteddrama.

Derek Benfield


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