Theatre Review: Two, Unity Theatre, Liverpool

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Image Source: Unity Theatre
Image Source: Unity Theatre

Written By: Seán Fitzsimmons

Format: Play
Genre: Comedy Drama
Date: February 2 2018
Location: Unity Theatre, Liverpool

For centuries, public houses have been places were the weary can find shelter and the lonely find company, even if that company happens to be in a glass.

Two is the story of such a pub. We are quickly introduced to the landlord and landlady (played by Jake Ryan and Rachael Reason), and come to learn that drama and sorrows can exist on either side of the bar.

As they pull pints and exchange pleasantries with the locals, their own interactions remain terse and cold. How can it be that in such a sociable setting two people can be so … unsociable?

As the narrative of their relationship unfolds, the play is punctuated with snapshots of the lives of the regular punters. Domestic violence, scandalous affairs and questionable fashion choices are intermingled with classic 80s hits.

Clever (and quick) costume changes mean that the turnover of characters flows as fast as the beer from the pumps. With just the right amount of sarcasm and sadness, the acting duet quickly wins the hearts of the audience, and proceed then to break them in time with their own.

This play is as humble and honest as any pub in any city, but the people are real and stories are there to be heard, should anyone choose to listen.

This will ultimately be the tipping point that makes this show a success; that there is a sincere honesty in the voices and the eyes of those who come and go – a testament to the acting calibre of Ryan and Reason. Furthermore, it is the reminder that, even though there is only the two of them, they are very much not on their own.

Overall Rating: 8/10 – Very Good