,Shifting Sirens present Tw*ts, a new play by Rebecca Ozer exploring female friendship and sexuality in the modern world.
The writer plays Rachael who shares a house with Georgia (Sophie Koumides) and Norah (Natasha Hale, also directing). Rachael and Georgia really dislike Norah’s boyfriend, Tom, who has cheated on her before and they believe will do so again. When they give their advice, they are only doing their best to be good people, but navigating around their own and Norah’s emotions is a minefield. A series of monologues tells us more about all of their stories including Rachael’s confusion over her sexual orientation and feelings towards Georgia.
When Norah finds pictures of Rachael on Tom’s phone, the resulting argument changes the dynamic of the houseshare forever, and all three will learn that everyone can behave like a complete tw*t .
The set gently nods to elements of the three characters’ personalities. A messy sofa, overladen clothes rail and overflowing wash-basket give Koumides the opportunity to pout into her phone taking selfies while Ozer diligently folds laundry. This subtly creates a sense of character before the dialogue even starts. This is further emphasised through costumes which illustrate the perceived levels of confidence and self esteem each character has.
The performances of all three actors is outstanding. Hale deserves particular praise for her facial expressions and body language which are a fantastic illustration of the emotional turmoil of her character.
One of the most difficult things in a short play is to take your audience through a full cycle of emotions but Tw*ts achieves just that. The highs and lows explored in less than an hour make you both laugh and cry. The three characters feel entirely genuine and there is a real sense of the rest of their lives which do not form part of this story.
The play cleverly combines political comedy with anecdotes of sexuality which made the audience laugh out loud for much of the play. The darker elements of the story are dealt with seriously and sensitively and the contrast between them and the light comic elements create layers of drama which make this a very entertaining and thought provoking piece of work.
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