The druggy debris of the 60s is more hip than ever these days. All the better then that its icons are demystified. Tim Plester’s new play portrays an imaginary scenario set during the lead up to John lennon’s murder in 1980. The double fantasy dream couple of lennon and Yoko (who he calls Mother), are shacked up good and proper, prone to bouts of domestic boredom, cold-turkey and occasional bursts of violence. An increasingly familiar bell-hop provides the scariest of room service, with Lennon introducing him to wacky baccy and booze while Yoko attempts to seduce
Anyone expecting idle nostalgia in this boldly written and stylishly produced piece of work should divert
Dakota: fascinating trip through make-believe pop history
straight to revivalist hell, as straight biography goes out the window. What we get instead is a fascinating trip which shows off the ugly side of everybody’s favourite working class hero, ruggedly sardonic in the face of Yoko’s hippy dippy pretences.
Hallucinogenic intent is further enhanced by speeded up between- scene film projections played out to a White Album soundtrack. Nick Asbury gives an accurate, bespectacled impression of Lennon and all in all this is a daring exercise in make- believe pop history which is easy (if you try) to imagine. (Neil Cooper)
Dakota (Fringe) Indent Theatre
Company, Acoustic Music Centre (Venue 25) 220 2462, Until 27 Aug, 4.30pm, £4.50 (£3).
WHEN HAnnY MET CATHY (AND ANNE ANo JANE ANn ANNE ANo KATHY ANo CATHY)
Henry \"III's tipple was nipple. Iiverybody knows that. But did you know he was a crooning Walfot‘d wideboy fitted by Burtons‘.’
In Bernadine Cor'rigan‘s modern chronicle. Paul Putner's Hank beds and beheads with a sortg in his heart and a royal groom on hand for all his Iavatorial needs. The wives. split between the author and Gillian lessor). include a sloaney Jane Seymour. a Bavarian backpacking Anne of Cleeves and a tambourine- slapping Catherine Parr.
Viry funny and gloriously anachronistic with its references to Abba. Baywatch and The Catholic Herald. this is a must. (Brian Donaldson) I When Harry Met Cathy (and Anne and Jane and Anne and Kathy and Cathy) (Fringe) Pleasance (Venue 33). 556 6550. until 2 Sept (not Tue 29) 3. I0pm. £7/£().50 (£5.50).
A fine play about homelessness serving to display the multi-faceted talent of Michael Mears. An architect finds solace in a brief friendship with several characters sleeping rough. IIis attempt to provide them with vacant council houses ends in moral perplexity and opporttrnity lost.
Most of the central themes — alcoholism. mental illness. addiction — are treated in a serious way. avoiding the heavy-
handed hysteria that tends to discredit shows about
the subject. Theatrical
« elements predominate over realistic ones. These
30 The List 25 Aug-7 Sept 1995
Soup: Michael Meats serves up the goods are the homeless we have no trouble feeling sorry for. not the ones that
confront us or leave us
Geraldine Mcliulty: frock tactics
repulsed. (Wes Shrum)
I Soup (Fringe) Salisbury Playhouse. Pleasance (Venue 33) 550 6550. until 2 Sept. 4.15pm. £6 (£5).
Somewhere in the future. food is being kept out of sight and out of mouths by the rather twisted Dearth Brothers. ()ur hero. Mr Mirth. aided by a chain-smoking copper. sets out to liberate the garden of culinary delights and get them
back to doing what they re ' hairdrcsscr‘ the” [hc
good at. Being eaten.
()ne can't deny the sheer physical versatility of the lone performer who contorts himself in and out of the bodies of all the characters involved. but to pad such thin pickings over 90 minutes leaves you feeling stuffed. There are some beautiful moments though. especially with the veritable Smorgasbord of cheeses. each one personified and given a personality all its own. Broken down into bite- size pieces this would work a whole lot better. and leave you wanting seconds. (Neil Cooper)
I Feedback (Fringe) Mouthpeace Theatre. Assembly Rooms (Venue 3) 226 2428. £8.50/ £7.50 (£7.50/£().50).
[SHEE- LE FAUVE
Ifyou've fond 70s memories of Iivel Knievel with his groovy clothes and exciting stunts. then on no account should you go and see [.0 l’urrve because disappointment beckons.
In the ring is a rather kinky circus mistress who has control of two guys dressed tip as lions on Itiotorbikes. Mix in lots of whip cracking. revved-up engines masquerading as roars. some loud bangs and you have the perfect recipe for frightening kids. The wheelies and ramp-jumping can be fairly impressive but it‘s hardly j aw -droppin g stuff. It also only lasts half an hour. so think seriously before parting with your blue note. (Philip I )orw ard )
I le Fauve (Fringe) Archaos Bikers BVI)A. Cirque Surreal (Venue I09) 226 5l38. until 2 Sept. various times. £5 (£3.50).
COMEDY GERALDINE MCNULTY - TEN WOMEN IN A ONE-FROCK SHOW
If you‘ve ever wanted to exact bloody revenge after a disastrous visit to the
award-winning Geraldine McNuIty has just the show for you.
She promises ten
women in one frock and
with a skillful use of
3 backing tapes and red
; scarfs. this fortysomethirig
character actress effortlessly brings to life such emotionalIy-strained
creations as a smarmy
Whitney Houston type. a
hippilied sloane with a penchant for over-
dramatisation. and a
macabre Irish hotelier
with a host of dead bodies
in her remote guest house. All are played with a
seasoned charm. but it‘s
; the berserk woman with the botched hair-do who 5 evokes the most hysteria.
with one audience
member squealing out: ‘I know how you feel hen‘.
No doubt about It. this is
the superior hit of the late- afternoon. (Ian Watson)
I Geraldine Mcllulty -
Ten Women in a One-
Frock Show (Fringe) The
Gilded Balloon (Venue
3B) 226 2l5l. until 2 Sept. 4.30pm. £6.50
SHEILA’S GIANT 5 WALL OF PLOT
Take a hike Il”/ro.ve Line. . . . The true masters of improvised
comedy are in town.
Sheila Theater's main prop is a wall containing a plot twists (hence the
name) such as ‘An Adage Is Coined' and
From two ball rolling ideas slung from the audience. the cast weave and froth through around half of the 30 possibilities. Today. ‘A Gorgeous Class
AI That Glitters: wham- ham-thank-you-glam
in; Ex.“ . \y 1:
Feedback: cheesy goings-on
Str'uggle' and the ‘American Planetarium I)ream'. 'I‘omorrow. who knows'.’
Such a format cannot be tackled without problems but the energy and ingenuity careering around the stage are enough to (lick any doubts into the aisle. With a stroke of torrid luck you may find yourself up there with them. (Brian l)onaldson)
I Sheila’s Giant Wall Of Plot Twists (Fringe) Sheila Theater. Stepping Stones (Venue 5|) 225 (i520. until 2 Sept (not Tue 29) 3. l5pm. £0 (£4.50).
ALL THAT GLITTEHS
All aboard that 70s retro glam rock revival train with this brilliant First Base theatre production and a wickedly bittersweet script by Allan Dunn that typifies so well the Fringe spirit in terms of quality and imagination.
Suzi Quatro. Gary Glitter. The Sweet and Slade are the glam musical inspiration for nostalgia band The Glamtastics. Composed of a misplaced Heavy Metal teen. an arguing married couple and a cocky would-be Casanova. The Glarntastics face an uphill struggle against their pub booking agent with a Bay City Rollers fetish and internal squabbles. A balanced musical that owes more to sharp scriptwriting than Spinal Tap scenarios. (Ann Donald)
I All That Glitters (Fringe) First Base Theatre. Netherbow (Venue 30) 556 957‘). until 2 Sept. 3pm. £5 (£3).
“ A; ' i .\ i, .