Perfect Days at Church Hill Theatre

Nov 12 2012 | By More

Leitheatre take on second Lochhead play

Debbie Whyte (Alice) & Jane Black (Barbs) in Leitheatre's Perfect Days. Church Hill Theatre November 2012. Photo © Leitheatre

Debbie Whyte (Alice) & Jane Black (Barbs) in Leitheatre’s Perfect Days. Church Hill Theatre November 2012. Photo © Marion Donohoe

By Thom Dibdin

Liz Lochhead’s Perfect Days, the hit comedy written by Scotland’s Makar for Siobhan Redmond, is being brought to the Church Hill theatre this week in a new production from Leitheatre.

The company had a big hit at the fringe in 2011 with their production of Lochhead’s Educating Agnes and hope that her earlier work will prove equally as successful.

Speaking of why he chose the production, director Matt Mason said: “To be honest, I thought, ‘what’s going to get them in?’ Leitheatre gave me a remit to direct a piece of drama that says something and entertains and offers a contemporary challenging vehicle for the cast.”

Mason, who teaches drama at Lasswade High School, adds that are plenty of plays which meet Leitheatre’s criteria. However, it was Perfect Days, which premiered a the Traverse in 1998, that sprang to mind.

“I knew Perfect Days,” says Mason, “and had read it and seen it a few years ago with the Goddess Redmond playing the veritable Hamlet-esque part that is Barbs Marshall and what I remembered most is laughing.

“Not at the poor soul Barbs who is trying to deal with her ‘dwindling supply of eggs’ and the voluble protests coming from her biological clock, but mostly at the satellite characters, which are there to ostensibly support Barbs, but only succeed in convoluting her life to a hilarious, yet sometimes poignant degree.”

The play is a sharp and poignant comedy, which reflects on the different kinds of love – romantic, motherly and friendship – which effect one woman as she goes about trying to get what she really, really wants. So how has Mason taken on the role of director?

Buy the script:

Profound and meaningful

“Being honest again, I haven’t tried to say something profound and meaningful with the text, I let that speak for itself, but have unashamedly gone down the gags, gags, gags line, and allowed whatever comedic skills the cast had to emerge alongside their characters and, although it has been a tiring trauchle, it has been an enjoyable ride.

“Special mention has to go to Jane Black, who has put her life on hold to create Barbs and all her variants of grace and I just hope that her husband Stevie doesn’t want to stab me!”

Perfect Days, Church Hill Theatre, Morningside Road, Edinburgh
Wed 14 – Sat 17 Nov; 7.30pm daily.
Tickets £9 (£7 concs.) available in advance from the Queen’s Hall Box Office on 0131 668 2019, online at and at the venue on performance nights.

Leitheatre website:


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