The second of the Preston Tringe Festival opening night double header was the very enjoyable ‘The Harpy and the Slob’ by Leonard Morley.Advertisement
After the seven characters of Waiting in Soho this was another play that happened in just one location, a bedroom, but the characters did interact.
The play is set in 1984 and follows the intense scenes between Maggy (Louise Cosgrove) and Richard (Steve Sutton) as they meet in the bedroom at a house party and it turns out they aren’t the complete strangers they first assume they are.
There was excellent chemistry between the two actors and Sutton in particular played his part with gusto, enjoying being a 30-something bachelor who cleans drains for a living. Cosgrove was impressive as spinster Maggy, capturing the conflicting emotions as she realises that she does know Richard, and it’s not in a favourable light due to an insurance claim, but at the same time realising she was attracted to a stranger who she wouldn’t normally be able to stand.
The two bicker, insult and yet become closer as the party wears on – both of them unable to stand the socialising downstairs, with their friends picking at them for being single. There are jokes a plenty throughout the show and the audience really enjoyed the banter between the two characters.
The ending is uplifting and both of the actors gave a great performance in what is a challenging play – one room, two people, a bottle of cider and a teddy bear for a prop for the entire show. This is a show definitely worth catching while it runs.
‘The Harpy and the Slob’ continues Upstairs @ Adelphi on Sunday 26th July at 9.30 PM.
Image credit to Peter Cosgrove.