City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Cheque Please, Zoo Pleasance (Monkey House), Review

By Kenneth Scott - Posted on 12 August 2015

Cheque Please (Nottingham New Theatre)
Show details
Nottingham New Theatre
Running time: 
Nikki Hill (director / writer) Gus Herbert(producer).
Madeleine Hardy (Ivy). Nicholas Slater (Greg / Group Member 1 / Lena's Father), Diderik Ypma (Charlie / Jake / Carl), Rebecca Jones (Counsellor /Mrs Pendle /Hayley / Customer 3), Genevieve Cunnell (Kristen / Ivy's Mother), Elizabeth Boyd (Alex / Customer 1 /Erin).

Today’s specials are chalked up on the board of Stirred Cafe - but for waitress, Ivy the day is anything but special.

Some days are better than others, but when feeling OK is merely defined by being able to get out of bed and not being tempted to down a bottle of pills, it has to be said, Ivy’s optimism is in the kitchen bin.

Amidst the mismatched cafe chairs and wobbly tables we are given the opportunity to view Ivy’s life and thoughts. To the customers she is just the waitress, given little thought as they make their demands and petty complaints. People who are never happy with their order. As if that’s important in the greater scheme of things.

Ivy is a self-declared high-functioning depressive, most of the time she can get by with the slightly crappy job and is even attending a counselling group at the behest of her mother. Her inner thoughts show her to be intelligent and witty, less neurotic than the customers, even open to the idea of love as something to hold onto.

Ivy breaks the fourth-wall to show us events alternating between the coffee shop, counselling group and evenings with friends, all as coloured by her own thoughts. Letting people see is the strongest thing that she can do. And what we witness is her hate of life and herself, her withdrawal into nothingness and her longing to be normal. Amongst her constant self-evaluation the greatest question will be, can she continue to live this way? The world will just keep turning.

This sensitively written and well performed new piece offers a chance to experience a different (sometimes affecting) life view without being melodramatic or judgemental.

Show Times: 7, 11, 13, 15, 17, 19, 21, 25, 27, 29, 31 August 2015 at 11.00am

Ticket Prices: £8 (£6)

Suitability: 14+