Last Updated on 15th August 2022
Paul T Davies reviews Rob Ward’s The MP Aunty Mandy and Me now playing at the Pleasance Dome as part of the Edinburgh Fringe.
The MP Aunty Mandy and Me.
(TOUR SCHEDULE BELOW)
A new play from Rob Ward, writer of Gypsy Queen, and here performed by him, is always worth seeing, and here is a tale of Dom, the only gay in a very small village, desperate to be Insta famous, and a fan of steam trains. “Dom by name not by nature.” When his local station is threatened with closure, he goes to see his local MP, who turns out to also be gay, and an internship, a secret affair and an introduction to the world of leather and fetishism unfolds .
Ward is an excellent performer, telling his tale with style and panache. There are some sharp one-liners, and he vocally makes clear distinctions between his characters, whose situation is complicated by the arrival of a bisexual member of the election campaign team. The hypocrisy of those in power is perfectly captured, and the way the class system picks up and throws away working-class people.
The Aunt Mandy of the title is the MDNA that his mother drops instead of alcohol, and I felt this part of the story wasn’t really necessary. It doesn’t add anything to the plot as the drug is accessed by the MP, and makes the mother a passive character. There’s also a long trippy sequence that begins to take the energy out of the play.
However, there is much to enjoy in this hugely thought-provoking, funny, sexy and entertaining play. And if you’re in the gay train enthusiast target audience, it’s dynamite!
Aug 14, 16-21
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THE MP AUNTY MANDY AND ME TOUR SCHEDULE
Curve – 16th & 17th Sep (on sale soon)
Hope Mill Theatre – 22nd – 25th Sept
Staffordshire University – 27th Sept (on sale soon)
Blackpool Grand – 28th & 29th Sept
Norwich Theatre Royal – 12th Oct
Yvonne Arnaud Theatre – 14th & 15th Oct
Dukes Lancaster – 21st Oct (on sale soon)