1. Mother Figure. This one is an interesting one to start with. With Daisy Dean playing a woman who talks to everyone like they're a child, and Isabella Weintraub and myself playing a married couple who are continuously fighting, there is a lot of tension on the stage. With most of the humour coming out of awkward situations, the actors (going third person here) have to deal with a lot, each having a definite character with issues that they do not address having to deal with (for lack of a better term) baby talk. I have to give credit to Daisy here, as she plays the role very maturely and manages to keep the weird humour alive while never breaking character. Reacting to her cheering someone up with a sock puppet brought in a lot of laughter from the audience, who seemed to enjoy the awkwardness between the 3 characters, which in the end was the desired effect.
This one is definitely not focusing on the comedy. Though there are a couple of jokes here and there, the focus has to be on the drama between Milo Stilitz and the two girls he's hitting on (Leyla Constantinidis and Cora Hilliard). We see him becoming more and more desperate after drinking, you start thinking that it'll just be a funny drunk story. But instead, you get a quite heartfelt piece, not so much about someone wanting to have sex (though it's in there) but someone who really is lonely. The main actors taking the piece and their dialogue really seriously and you end up feeling sorry for Milo’s character, while at the same time worried for both of the girls he's hitting on, which is an impressive combination. 3. Between Mouthfuls.
Defiantly the funniest one. The scene between 2 couples talking amongst each other with the actors taking turns speaking, seems a bit flat at the beginning. But what makes it really funny, is the waiter (played by Sam Hirons). Mixing fantastic facial expressions, timing that adds a quick pace humour to it and reacting to what the other actors are saying, by both offering them food and playing the understanding barman. The two sets of dialogue also adds a lot of tension on stage with Naz Simseck's character accusing Patrick Miles's character of cheating on her, while Leyla Constantinidis's character admitting that she had cheated on Preston Nyman's character. So this scene has tension, awkwardness, great timing and lot of laughs.
4. Gosforth's Fete
This one had a lot of plot, including cheating, pregnancy, poorly timed announcements and terrible weather. With all 5 of the characters each having something go wrong for them, which of course means great jokes for us (the audience). The humour mainly comes from something going wrong (tea overflowing, scout masters getting drunk, and pregnancy announced over tannoy). But highlight has to be Thomas Barkley who after hearing his fiancée is pregnant, gets really rather drunk and starts singing into microphones and calling people fascists. Defiantly a highlight of the play as a whole.
This is by far the strangest one. The rest of the stories have some form of realism, to the point where you could believe each one could have genuinely happen. This one (consisting of 5 monologues) is very unrealistic as each one is annoyed by someone interrupting them, and then goes to interrupt someone else. While each of the actors perform their respective part very well, it is interesting to see how it breaks away from the style of the previous four stories.
All in all, I think it went rather well. It's also impressive as it was the director’s (David Chivers) first time directing at the school and he has certainly proved himself worthy enough to direct more.