Ed Fringe Update – The Five Drinks Play

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Dating – at the best of times – is awkward. At least it has been in my experience and it certainly is in the case of Dylan Moon. On a drinks date with self-confident yuppie Archie, Dylan Moon reflects back on his previous dates both before and after ‘coming-out’. The Five Drinks Play is one of two Theatre Group productions showing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this month at Paradise at Augustine’s, George IV Bridge.

The themes running through Jake Williams and Anya Dye’s original piece are very topical this year. With the rise of Chanel 4’s Cucumber, Banana, Tofu series and the continued success of Orange Is The New Black, 2015 has been a very LGBTQ-proud year and Leeds University students are pioneering its representation at the biggest art event in the world. However, the weight of waving the rainbow flag did seem to weigh a little heavy on some aspects of the performance. For example; at the beginning and during some long monologues, the lead actor’s delivery was a bit forced and juvenile. On the whole though the cast executed their roles excellently which was particularly impressive given that the tone of the play alternates quite drastically from funny and light-hearted to serious and emotional.

Williams and Dye have written a touching and thought-provoking script here. The story alone is solid enough to make for a good play, but what makes it even better is the way the action pans out, refusing any form of chronological structure. It is through its use of flash-backs and flash-forwards that the audience’s attention is captured and isn’t released until we’re brought back to the present.

Overall, despite some shaky acting in parts (which is forgiveable because the actors were clearly very invested in their characters), the tale of Dylan Moon is an emotional but amusing play which speaks to a part of us all, reminding us – whether you like it or not – of the most awkward times we’ve asked someone; “Do you want to go for a drink?”

Cameron Tallant

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