and Two Make Sex'. April 2009
by Richard Harris and Leslie Darbon
Review by Sue Dupont, NODA
PLAYERS - TWO AND TWO MAKE SEX
Review by David Hare
Fathers and father-figures, bits on the side, a put-upon wife, a bullish boyfriend, and a
family friend who dispenses useless advice - they're all there in this entertaining
comedy of suburban life in the not-too-distant past, enthusiastically brought to the
stage by new director, Alan Carpenter. Under Alan's affectionate direction, the
Players once more take a play, set it in an ingenious double roomed setting and play it
for all it's worth.
Which, frankly, isn't much. The script is uneven, ranging from genuine belly laughs to
embarrassingly corny lines, and the action all but grinds to a halt in parts leaving you
wanting something much more biting. That said, the audience responded well to the
undoubtedly accomplished performances of most of the cast, and kept the evening
bubbling along in a good natured and enjoyable manner.
Kevin Oelrichs, a talented and experienced actor if ever there was one, plays George
Williams to athletic perfection, playing away from home with Alison Burton's no-
nonsense Jane Bowers, an experience which must have given her immense relief from
life with Paul Goldsmith's overheated and heavy-handed Nick. The delightful and
ever-dependable Rowena Atkinson plays George's long-suffering wife, who will go
for anything for a quiet life, until old fires are rekindled by the arrival of Nick. Tabi
Paternoster, worthy of better things, as Ruth Sharpies, makes the most of the lifeless
lines the character is given, and the world-weary look comes in to great effect. And
Pete Harrold is a welcome sight towards the end, where his appearance does much to
sort out the mayhem already caused by his predecessors.
A word of unqualified praise for the technical team, who managed the sound and
lighting effects, linking or contrasting the two rooms, in a meticulous and faultless
way. Their contribution added much to our appreciation of the evening.
But - two and two make sex? Not a bit of it! In the closing words of the author of Lock
Up Your Daughters, that marvellous spoof on Restoration Comedy:-
"In spite of everything you may have heard about it,
We actually got through the night without it,"
Yes, indeed. Despite Mr Harris's and Mr Darbon's efforts, two and two still only