Cheap and Tearful

Our Theatre Company, Cafe Royal.

***** (five stars you philistine, meaning the best of the best, canít get better!)


Like a bad marriage, it is easy to find yourself in a mental institution; harder to get out, if it depends on convincing a doctor you are not only sane, but will try patching things up with the husband you threatened with a carving knife. Cargill Thompsonís Cheap and Tearful puts the husband and wife Gary (Andrew Stanson) and Lucy (Framboise Gommendy) at either ends of the Cafť Royal stage during visiting hour.

Utterly appealing. Utterly convincing, they share their own, separate confidences about failing marriage with the audience, looking into our eyes and encouraging, in turn, to support their side. Itís nice to be needed, but before the apparently happy ending you are move to question your own life by Gommendyís knowing acceptance of failure and Stansonís blinkered air of innocence; those with failing marriage themselves should avoid the show that deals so directly with the question of whether people actually live together or merely share a set of rooms, avoiding communication for fear of the hatred that might spill out.

Jane Scott, the Scotsman