Helena Fox

I had the opportunity to attend a rough runthrough of Two Man Show over this past weekend, and to watch the constituent parts beginning to be stitched together. There was something fitting about observing the recreation of RashDash’s 2017 Edinburgh Fringe show in an ADC dressing room. RashDash created a piece of theatre that pushed boundaries and explored the challenges of talking about gender and the patriarchy, bringing freshness and energy to tired arguments. The dressing room stripped of the show’s promised ‘fancy lights and electric guitars’, I entered an intimate rehearsal room with just the actors and directors.

"I think that, in some ways, to be a man is exhausting, and this is a play that captures that."

Under the watchful eyes of director Chloe Lansley and assistant director Anastasia Joyce, Sara Hazemi (Herself/Dan) and Tigerlily Hutchinson (Herself/John) ran through the naturalistic scenes depicting the two main male characters, Dan and John, two brothers who are friendly and polite on the surface, but simultaneously incredibly resentful of one another. In this room, they explored the idea of male relationships, of responsibility and care: John for their elderly father, Dan for a son his wife is expecting. There are moments of awkward politeness that are incredibly difficult to watch, the most ironic Cards Against Humanity game you have ever seen, and moments where one feels almost a physical need for an expression of human emotion that instead bubbles under the surface, unexpressed. This is not a flaw in the direction, but rather an asset: to keep such high-intensity emotion running just under the skin of scenes at the same level for so long is exactly as the scenes depict, and I must commend the actors for stepping into these men's figurative size-10s. I think that, in some ways, to be a man is exhausting, and this is a play that captures that.

Helena Fox

Helpfully, the space of the dressing room was fairly similar to how the stage will be set up: long and thin and fairly plain and simple, in the style of a quickly assembled and disassembled Fringe show, with a costume rail at one end and a table at the other. The costume rail will be for quick changes, for the show shifts fluidly from man to woman to something greater (like a goddess!) with ease. I did not see said costumes, but such is the talent of Hazemi and Hutchinson that it was like watching them put their “man hats” on before they walked into Dan and John's scenes; to see this complete with costumes will I think be incredible to witness.


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It was certainly curious to see a show in such a light, almost fully-formed and yet somehow very much still in development; watching the actors, however, I could absolutely envision how it would look onstage. Imagination is, after all, key to the show – we watch two women switching in and out of male roles before our eyes – and so it was not so much of a stretch for me to see it all in its sequinned glory. I can’t wait to watch it put together.

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