REVIEW: Dirty Great Love Story, Arts Theatre

This wonderfully lyrical comedy makes you leave the theatre with a smile on your face and hope in your heart. 

Dirty Great Love Story, Arts Theatre - Felix Scott and Ayesha Antoine, Courtesy of Richard Davenport for The Other Richard_4.JPG

Felix Scott and Ayesha Antoine. (c) Richard Davenport for The Other Richard. 

Having begun as a 10 minute poetry duet in 2010, Katie Bonna and Richard Marsh’s play has been developed into a heartwarming and genuine love story that is easy to relate to particularly if you are trying to date and fall in love in this era filled with dating websites and apps.

The story of the characters Richard and Katie begins as they meet and end up having a one night stand that leaves Katie feeling awkward and Richard entranced. From then on the pair have many other awkward encounters that somehow manage to charm the audience.

Perhaps much of this is down to the rhythmic and poetic language used throughout, clearly carefully thought through by Marsh and Bonna to draw the audience into what is simply a  love story. There might be occasional moments when it does get slightly crude, but because of the way in which the play has been constructed it keeps the characters and the story down to earth and believable.

Pia Furtado’s production is wonderfully stripped back, allowing Ayesha Antoine and Felix Scott’s performances to take centre stage throughout, exposing the characters differing feelings and approaches to the idea of love perfectly. Nothing about the production feels forced, from the performances all the way through to the sense of humour.

Of course in order for this very exposing play to work, the central performances have to work well together to make the audience believe that these two characters with such different perspectives and attitudes to life could work together potentially as a couple. Thankfully, with Felix Scott’s awkward but charming Richard and Ayesha Antoine’s more complicated and confused Katie, the balance between awkwardness and mutual likability is perfectly played.

Some might find that Dirty Great Love Story doesn’t tell the audience anything that we don’t already know, yet looking past that what you do get is a heartwarming if occasionally complicated (from the characters point of view anyway) love story that doesn’t take itself too seriously. It is certainly a great cure for the blues on a cold winter’s day.

Dirty Great Love Story is a play that makes you fall in love with love all over again and leaves you with hope in your heart. Wonderfully entertaining.

Dirty Great Love Story continues to play at the Arts Theatre until the 18th March. To book tickets visit: Discount Theatre.com, Theatre Tickets Direct.co.uk,Love Theatre.com, Theatre People.com and UK Tickets.co.uk

Rating: ❤❤❤❤❤