The Plumbing is a comedy that will have you choking on your drink and looking over to see your partner’s reaction.
Bespectacled Theatre Company began in 2016, with the goal of creating ethical theatre which explores social issues such as sex, LGBTQ+ and consent. All of which feature within this performance as part of Liverpool Fringe.
Vera, or “V” and Will are childhood friends who now get together over a cup of tea to talk about life, sex and relationships, where they are now and how they got there. We are introduced to the strong-willed and fiery personality of Vera, played by Frankie Le-Voguer, as lights go up on her engaging (in some ways) in a sex act with Jake.
Using voice-over to play the inner-most thoughts of Vera, both men and women squirm and giggle at the brutal honesty and scarily-real mindset of this character. The audience is ultimately taken on a rollercoaster of a multitude of different relationships, emotions, and sex through the eyes of both Vera and Will, played by Gerard McLaughlin.
The stage is split in two, between a bedroom and a sitting room, allowing the characters to transition between recalling and reliving their memories of their most intimate moments. From the beginning, the audience is hit with laugh out loud one-liners, awkward encounters, and some cracking comedic timing. The writing is relatable, funny and engaging, all whilst trying to tackle some important issues such as consent.
All of the actors bravely bared all whilst on stage, refreshingly showing what sex is really like. This play is no holds barred when it comes to discussing today’s society and the impact technology, media and education have on the way we view ourselves in relationships. Self-deprecating Vera is a contradiction of feeling worthless and fighting to keep her self-worth in relationships.
Along the way, we meet Katie, brilliantly played by Libbie Saunders, and multiple characters skillfully played by Jake Szuplewski. Though most of the characters were relatable and well developed, I would have liked to have seen Lucifer, the neighbour, explored a little more. Perhaps appearing earlier on in the play would strengthen the impact he has on Will towards the end. Despite this, the relationships between all of the characters were unique, intriguing and told their own story, enabling anyone and everyone to relate to this piece of theatre.
If you’re looking for laugh-out-loud, poignant and meaningful theatre with a splash of raunchiness, then this is the show for you.
Keep an eye out for the next Bespectacled Theatre production by keeping a close eye on their website.
Kitty completed her BA Hons degree in Drama and went on to do the Everyman & Playhouse young writer’s course. She continued her studies with short courses at Liverpool University and writes for The National Student. Kitty continues to write creatively, recently getting longlisted for the BBC Comedy Script Room submissions.