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Unlike the immaculately designed Notting Hill kitchen in which Julian Clary’s architect Michael is preparing dinner for a special guest, the late Stephen Clark’s last play is, I’m afraid, a bit of a mess.

It begins promisingly enough with middle-aged Michael, musing (in rhyme and rather wittily) on the link between death and sex as he meticulously chops the ingredients for pasta puttanesca - “whore’s pasta”  - for Tim, the cocky younger man who picked him up in the local pub earlier that day.

credit: Scott Rylander

Sadly, it’s mainly downhill from there with intermittent flash backs to that initial meeting (Tim shifty, dangerous and certainly not to be trusted – “going too far is what I do best”, and Michael reserved, fastidious) as the dinner date progresses and things turn very nasty indeed.

But despite a couple of unexpected big laughs, the mind games of this mismatched duo fail to convince. Clark wrote the piece for Clary, but though the pasta may have turned out first rate, sadly neither his well-honed way with innuendo – nor the protracted full frontal nudity of James Nelson-Joyce’s menacing Tim   – can rescue this short two-hander from mediocrity.

Trafalgar Studios (2)

Whitehall, SW1A 2DY

Tube Charing Cross

Till 28th October    

Tickets £25.00 - £40.00)

www.LeGrandMort.tarento.net

 


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Theatre Review: Le Grand Mort
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