Men in Cities : Chris Goode and Company
31stJuly - 24 Aug
I first saw Chris Goode around 12 years ago by chance in the festival with his play ‘Kiss of Life’ and since then whenever the festival arrives the first thing I check is to see if he is performing. He is a playwright of unbelievable magnitude and delivers his one man show as a monologue that hooks you from the first line and holds you mesmerised in the true tradition of storytelling.
Men in Cities is a haunting and very human narrative of numerous characters in a city, each simultaneously going about their seemingly unconnected lives. It’s the little moments that make it resonate with such a believable punch. Framed by the fallout from two violent deaths the apparently inexplicable suicide of a young gay man and the murder of Drummer Lee Rigby in Woolwich 2013, Men in Cites presents fractured snapshots of dozens of seemingly disconnected lives that together offer a challenging, but radically humane portrait of how we live now.
Chris Goode has a raw and rare honesty and he expertly interweaves his own life story along with the fictional ones to the point that truth and fiction blur into one complex volatile piece of work. Watching his Men in Cities is like going on a cinematic journey of the mind, watching the movie unfold yet hearing every murmur behind the actions of each person and understanding on a deeper level where each characters intentions and desires truly lie. This epic dark comedy performed with a seething honesty is an elegant portrayal of both his characters, and himself, in the process of creating them.
People queue up afterwards to buy a copy of the script (myself included), to savour this playwright’s masterpiece in the comfort of their own home. A testament to the quality of the writing, yet the delivery is such an intimate and honest experience nothing will compare with the performance. Chris Goode feels like a modern day reader of epics, a wordsmith of our time, expertly laying bare our fractured realities, while at the same time subtly hinting at how they are inexplicably woven together. FIVE STARS
Reviewer : Glenda Rome