The Trouble With Double

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JOYCE MCMILLAN on THE TROUBLE WITH DOUBLE at Oran Mor, Glasgow, for  The Scotsman 10.10.13.
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3 stars ***

FIVE YEARS ON from his first huge success with The Wall, D.C. Jackson is emerging as a playwright with an intense interest in classic comedy form, and a gift for complex and hilarious one-liners.  His difficulty, though, seems to lie in making these qualities work together to create a play with real resonance and meaning; and for all its formal neatness, this new 55-minute piece for the Play, Pie and Pint season gives the impression that some of its most obviously funny lines have been grafted onto the surface of the play, rather than emerging organically from the story.

The Trouble With Double is a classic wedding-day farce – set in the groom’s hotel bedroom – in which the big day is disrupted by the arrival of the bride Sally’s estranged and vengeful identical twin sister, Merrill.  Posing as Sally, Merrill seduces the best man, who promptly spills the beans to the groom about his fiancee’s apparent unfaithfulness; cue endless confusion and mayhem, of a predictable but well-crafted kind.

Kenny Miller’s production could perhaps use a more naturalistic and less cartoonish approach; and the slightly awkward comic language and idiom of the play never quite match the deftness of the structure.  Yet there are three clever, energetic performances from Robert Jack as the groom, Johnny Austin as the best man, and Louise McCarthy as the bride and her troublesome double; and all three seem to grow in confidence as the play rolls on, finding the right comic tone in the end, even if they struggle in some of the earlier scenes.

ENDS ENDS

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