Presley: Dad used to say tap water was the best drink in the world.
Cosmo: How long he been dead?
Cosmo: Yeah well, a lot can happen in years.
Presley: It can. But sometimes…it doesn’t.
This is The Pitchfork Disney, the first play by Phillip Ridley, the man behind ‘Crocodillia’ and ‘Leaves of Glass’, and a head first dive into the anxieties, fantasies and dark mental recesses of two 28 year old twins.
Potential punters can be forgiven for mistakenly thinking the play is associated with its movie making namesake. There are no brightly coloured animations; no charming princes; barely a glimmer of hope. But there is a infantile streak that runs throughout. Presley and Haley are adults, mysteriously abandoned by their parents in their youth and emotionally cast adrift into the odd world of chocolate binging, story-telling and half-sleep. Enter Cosmo Disney. A man set to wrench this curious slice of ‘In-Yer-Face’ theatre from its foundations.
It is a play about growing up, sexuality and grub. It is above all a play about people. ‘We’ve cried many a time in rehearsal,’ Lauren Moakes, the play’s co-director told me. ‘Either we’re emotionally unstable or they’re bloody good actors. We’ve spent the rehearsal process exploring questions such as ‘What is outside?’, ‘where have they just been?’, ‘What had happened in their past?’ and ‘Is what is happening the norm for them?’
For the play’s undisputed heartthrob Oliver Brassell, ‘Haley and Presley are obsessed with the past. Their inability to let go and accept that their parents have gone is what defines them as characters. they cling on to their childhoods, looking back through rose tinted spectacles, telling old stories to one another over and over again, whilst indulging on chocolate and sweets. When an outsider in the form of Cosmo enters their space, the world of the play is turned on its head. Cosmo manipulates seemingly innocent Presley in a variety of ways. Pitchfork is a play that offers a variety of things. It is at once charming, a little scary and laugh out loud funny.’
Tickets available from the Vanbrugh Stalls Friday 12-2, online at http://www.yorkdramasoc.com/#!shop/vstc5=week-3 and on the door.