Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Phys Ed - Opposite Leg, 24/7 Festival Manchester

Phys Ed
Written by Simon Carter

Director: David Windle
Reviewer: Lisa Whiteside

Phys Ed is a solo performance based upon the character of Neville Trellis. As the piece develops we discover that Neville is rugby obsessed PE Teacher with an inferiority complex over his amazing twin brother and previous history of wetting the bed!

As a one man show, this piece written by Simon Carter, has a massive task of keeping the audience entertained for 55 minutes with the stories and revelations from one man, Mr Trellis. In order to do so it is necessary for us to share his laughter, pain, downright embarrassment and desires for more in life and this was definitely made possible by the very competent performance from actor Nicholas Osmond.

From the offset it is evident that as an audience we are going to empathise with this character despite the ‘plummy’ accent, skin tight leggings and mini warm-up routine.The subtleties of the character in both moments of light and shade is what really keeps you entertained as you giggle, cringe and feel for this character and his encounters with other people.

I would highly recommend Phys Ed, directed by David Windle. A strong, confident and very humorous performance is given by its only actor and the dialogue clearly illustrates the writer’s previous comedy connections and experience. This is a piece that doesn’t preach, cover any particular topical issue of today or have any other agenda than to purely entertain and that is what I would argue is its greatest strength. As we now live in a society that is often rather bleak with constant reminders of swine flu, gun crime or terrorist attacks, if your wish is to be entertained and forget for a brief moment about such horrors of the world then this piece is definitely for you
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