Guy Masterson, TTI in association with Maverick Theatre Company
Assembly George Square
Pete, Andy, Linda and Sue are P.A.L.S. They have been since very young schoolchildren. They are well-match. It’s Sue’s garden so she’s the boss. Sue is number four because Pete is number one and he says so. These are the monumental moments of childhood.
In Pals we see them grow from early schoolchildren to the brink of adulthood. They help each other grow up. The boys test their limits with the girls, becoming aware of their differences, especially as they grow into their sexuality. The girls don’t mind experimenting but here they are the “boss”. It is so familiar. Slowly, the characters and personalities of each grow up. But we must watch closely. They are best of pals who grow to be strangers.
Kizzy Dunn as Sue, Amy Anderson as Linda, Andrew Greaves as Andy and Phillip John Jones as Pete have created realistic children who grow to be adults. These four talented actors, also in Romeo and Juliet, are well-cast and well-matched.
This is based on a on a true story from director / writer Nick Hennegan’s own past. He has constructed a believable and enchanting world that does not reach farther than their front doors and no more painful than a skinned knee with the energy and imagination of children—until the end.
Four white chairs create their world with only one onstage costume change. Kudos to the production team: costume, lights, sound, board tech.
As realistic as his script is, Hennegan's directing is spot-on, especially the one frighteningly well-done moment when the somewhat naïve Andy has an unexpected homosexual encounter. Greaves reaction is so real, so raw, so painful, so mesmerizing. Audiences live for these moments.
This is a winning team of talent and another jewel of Guy Masterson.
Reviewer: Catherine Lamm