A new, utterly iconcoclastic play premiering at this year’s Brighton Fringe tomorrow promises to live up to the festival’s zany reputation. Billed as “a play that doesn’t like plays and has been written to satirise all of them”, ‘What’s Wrong With Monotony?’ by returning Brighton Fringe playwright Tim Coakley chronicles the tribulations caused by a theoretically fictional ‘couch potato playwright’.
In the play, to the consternation of friends, cast and director, the writer chooses to follow his own, entirely unhelpful, theme. “Why do we put on plays in the first place? What’s wrong with monotony?” muses the couch-bound scribe complacently, as his panicking director and cast remind him that the performance is, in fact, that very afternoon. What, aside from more or less everything, can possibly go wrong?
In what promises to be one of the most original contributions to Brighton Fringe this year, “What’s Wrong With Monotony?” explores what it means to write a theatrical performance in the twenty-first century. The writer of the piece intends to ask why theatre is needed and whether it still has a place in our society. In doing so he satirises himself and his own writing, “… belittles his fellow writers, lampoons the acting profession and ridicules theatre goers.” Boom! Thanks Tim!
“Will [the playwright] be able to prise himself from his sofa and produce something? Will the director finally get him to write a play? Or will the actors have to improvise the whole thing?” ponders Coakley, laying down a firm challenge to his locally-found cast and director. Will he indeed? Given that a great deal of improvisation has been promised, we can only guess!
The only way to find out whether the writer has given his actors anything at all to work with is to attend a performance. We suspect that they have rehearsed at least something, as the press release promises “music, songs and laughter”. Somewhat more ominously it also includes ‘possibly’ even a play-within-a-play. Is that ‘possibly’ as in they haven’t decided yet? We will be on the edge of our seats for this one!
What will happen? Will the actors have to improvise the whole thing or will Tim (sorry, the fictional writer) find some motivation and get his job done ….
Tickets for “What’s Wrong With Monotony?” can be purchased here. Performances are at Rialto Theatre on 4th, 5th and 6th May, starting at 5:15 pm.