Saturday, 24 May 2014

Scene Change – Liverpool Playhouse Studio – 22/05/2014

Scene Change is a recent innovation from Young Everyman Playhouse Producers, in which the Studio offers a bi-monthly showcase for, in the words of the group’s web page, “...the very best of Liverpool’s freshest creative talent. From writers to artists, magicians to musicians - we’ve got every scene covered. Scene Change aims to raise awareness of Liverpool’s newest arts contributors, providing a platform for those just starting out and those developing an existing reputation”.

On this occasion an hour or so was filled by four segments; a piece for four actors followed by three solo performances.

Introduced as an acting masterclass, the Greg Bike Show brought us a comedy in which a father and son (Liam Hale and Dom Davies), sparring with each other in their championing of different acting techniques and abetted by two colleagues, demonstrate the principle with “Dead Dog on the Pavement”. Sharply witty and played with great timing, this was both well written and presented. Follow @GregBikeShow on twitter for details of them heading to Edinburgh Fringe. 

Second was a segment from stand-up comedian Mike Osbourne, who has a keen ear for word-play and irony. Comedy is a particularly subjective thing, but this brand of humour went down well with the audience and it certainly worked for me.

Next up was Lewis Bray. He is working on a full length play called Cartoonopolis that will be presented later in the year at the Studio. Here he gave us an scene from the piece, in which he plays various members of his family including himself. The play tells the true, touching and often funny story of his own brother and the cartoon world he inhabits within his imagination. Based on this extract, here will be one for the diary when it appears in full.

Finally came a dark, almost sinister short work by past YEP writer Sarah Tarbit, in which a wheelchair-bound man reflected on his life. It is sadly true that, faced with a person in a wheelchair, we often see a disability rather than an individual. Despite how far we have come, taboos still remain and many people fail to consider that someone with a physical disability has the same capacity for desires and frustrations as everyone else. This piece challenged that misconception head on and raised some uncomfortable but important questions. Daniel Murphy gave a poweful delivery and was directed by YEP young director Rio Matchet.

Scene Change is not widely publicised and its audience is largely made up of members of Young Everyman Playhouse, but tickets are available at a bargain price and a follow for @YoungEveryPlay on Twitter will keep you posted on upcoming dates.

Many thanks to the YEP members who kindly supplied me with the names of the artists involved!

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