Recently, I have realised that I have become very bad at using London to my advantage. I live and mainly work south of the river (my sister refers to where I live as ‘Surrey’ – it’s actually Wandsworth), and on cold winter evenings, cycling into central London does not seem appealing, home and warmth and supper sound far more pleasant.
However, I live in London, and this is really not acceptable, so I have been making an effort to cross over that river into London proper and go and experience some of the amazing things on offer.
This week I went to see the romantic comedy Dirty Great Love Story, written by Katie Bonna and Richard Marsh and directed by Pia Furtado, at the Arts Theatre, and it was the perfect way to cheer up a cold January evening.
Dirty Great Love Story is the story of Katie and Richard who meet one night in a nightclub, spend one slightly awkward night at a hotel, and are by chance brought together again by mutual friends. Over a couple of years, bumping into each other at parties and weddings, neither can quite decide if the other actually likes them, or if they even like each other at all. I mean, should they be together, and could they?
It’s a fun, very relatable modern day boy-meets-girl story, and the characters are superbly cliché. Ayesha Antoine plays Katie, the down to earth 30 year old who has recently been dumped and she also plays her overly posh, fun-loving friend Cece, with brilliant vivacity. Felix Scott plays Richard, the geeky and loveable 30-something year old who can’t quite believe his luck at meeting cool pretty Katie. His rendition of Matt Priest the suave ‘toff’ is wonderfully over the top and skin-crawlingly good.
The story is easy-going, lighthearted and believable, but what really makes this play exciting is that the entire 80 minutes is spoken in verse. It certainly isn’t too serious, at one point Felix Scott’s character Rich, rhymes ‘owl’ ‘bowel’ ‘trowl’ and ‘scowl’ in four lines whilst on a stag-do – as you do. The story is really brought alive with the use of slightly strange rhyming verse and quick witted word play, and it makes potentially objectionable characters very endearing. There is a lovely Dire Straits ‘Romeo and Juliet’ balcony moment too 😘.
The set is simple but brightly coloured, and Katie wears a great yellow jumper (I quite want it!).
It was fun and cheering, there were lots of surprisingly pleasing laugh out loud moments, and it is definitely worth a watch on a cold winter evening.
Photos courtesy of Richard Davenport for The Other Richard