My Romantic History

Aug 17 2016 | By More

✭✭✭✭✩  Well timed

theSpace on the Mile (Venue 39) Sun 7 – Sat 27 Aug 2016
Review by Hugh Simpson

Energetic, sharply funny and beautifully played, Hysterically Human and New Celts’ My Romantic History is an extremely entertaining production at theSpace on the Mile.

D C Jackson’s 2010 play is a funny and well-observed take on modern coupling, with new work colleagues Tom and Amy awkwardly trying to negotiate a relationship after a one-night stand.

Boston Alexander and Rebecca Divine in rehearsals. Photo: Hysterically Human

Boston Alexander and Rebecca Divine in rehearsals. Photo: Hysterically Human

This may not seem like the most original of scenarios, but it is described with a brash, modern take that recognisably stems from Scottish tradition, and is done justice by the three-strong cast. Boston Alexander’s Tom and Lori Olive Kennedy’s Amy are both very fine performances. The way the play switches constantly from conversations to direct address of the audience could be disastrous, but both handle it with apparent ease.

What is even more impressive is the way that they both present sharply different characters as the story is told from different points of view, that are nevertheless still recognisable as the same person. Alexander switches from swaggering and confident to insecure, while Kennedy goes from clingy and neurotic to being someone who only wanted to get a partner to shut up a work colleague.

unfussily inventive

That colleague is Sasha, played by the excellent Rebecca Divine. She and Kennedy both take on multiple parts from Tom and Amy’s pasts, with each one done with style and great comic timing. Divine’s portrayal of Amy’s ex Calvin Kennedy is a particular joy.

There is an unfussily inventive air to Robin Wilson’s direction that keeps everything speeding along. While it seems to deal with modern dilemmas, there is a definite timelessness to the situations on show here. Even if you do not pick up on specific references (such as the way that most of Amy’s exes seem to share names with Kilmarnock players) this is snappy and funny enough to carry everyone along with it.

Running time: 1 hour 10 minutes (no interval)
theSpace on the Mile (Venue 39), 80 High Street, EH1 1TH
Sunday 7 – Saturday 27 August 2016
Odd dates only: 1.45 pm
Book tickets on the EdFringe website:
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