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Sense and Compatibility

by on 13 August 2022

Pre Prandial Perplexities

Sense and Compatibility

by Nina Schlautmann and Sarah Tiplady

SchlautladyINK at Etcetera Theatre, Camden, then at The Lion and Unicorn Theatre, Kentish Town until 16th August.  Part of the Camden Fringe

Review by Heather Moulson

Not having been to a morning play for a long time, I looked forward to this pre-lunch experience.

As we take our seats in the surprisingly roomy theatre above The Oxford Arms, one of the actors, Nina Schlautmann paces the stage area nervously, already paving a nice build-up.  She is joined by two wooden stools and an orange suitcase laid bare, containing toilet seats, and other intriguing props brought in to furnish the stark set.   Then a projected backdrop of skilled and detailed sketches showing images, among other settings, of interview rooms and ironic supermarkets appears.  However, even bereft of these things, the sharp performances and dialogue would have dressed the set beautifully.

Layering away with role-playing from strippergrams, pirates and babies, accountants, hairdressers and er – a random person, the shift of a power game is passed between two women with razor- sharp precision in this two-handed piece.    Pseudo interviews and other confrontations, real or otherwise are kept tight and intriguing.   Skilled actors, moody lighting and sound, and the exquisitely detailed art background takes us to the final layer.   The punchline is worth waiting for in this sixty-minute drama.

Very well written by the two actors, Nina Schlautmann and Sarah Tiplady, their rapport is genuine and insightful; and the acting achieves the right balance of moods in what appears to be a rocky relationship.  Coming to a climax with one sentence at the end, they reveal everything about themselves.

Camden Fringe 2022

Nina and Sarah are also the producers for their debut presentation, and I’d recommend looking out for these two actors.   The moody sound was designed by Juan Carlos Ruiz and the illustrator was Alice Genet.  Intricately directed by Bethany Henry Gemmell, who has an impressive background, the Camden Fringe Festival should be proud to present this clever piece. 

Heather Moulson, August 2022

Imagery by Alice Genet

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