Claire Marlein will star alongside Laurie Duncan as Guildford Fringe Theatre Company presents a new professional production of Jim Cartwright’s gritty play, Two, at the Back Room of the Star Inn, Guildford.

First performed in 1989 at the Octagon Theatre in Bolton, Two follows the simple concept of two actors playing fourteen different characters between them. The action is set entirely in the local pub – in this case, The Back Room of The Star Inn of course!

Two  is at The Back Room of the Star Inn from Monday 2 – Saturday 7 November 2020 (excluding Friday). Tickets are on sale here

You’re starring in Two by Jim Cartwright, what can you tell us about the play?

Two by Jim Cartwright takes place over the course of one evening in a characterful Northern pub. It focuses on a bickering man and wife, the Landlord and Landlady, and their customers. It provides intimate insights into the lives of the many locals that drop by. It’s a show that delivers both comedy and tragedy and leaves you totally invested in the characters.

What is it about Jim Cartwright’s writing that made you so keen to be part of this show?

As soon as I saw the casting call for the production, I knew I would be so lucky to be a part of Two. Jim Cartwright’s writing is extremely raw and direct. He’s able to portray so much about these characters and their relationships in such a short amount of time. I feel incredibly lucky to have the opportunity to bring these characters to life.

What will be the biggest challenge for you in playing so many different characters?

The biggest challenge is to make sure there’s a clear and distinct switch in characters. I think the key is knowing each individual character inside out to be able to deliver the smooth transitions. Getting my head around going from a Yorkshire accent straight into a Scouse accent has been another difficult yet funny challenge!

What are you looking forward to most about working with Laurie Duncan?

I was so blown away by Laurie’s performance in our initial read through that I almost forgot to read my part! I am really looking forward to us supporting each other to bring all these complex characters to life. It has been great fun working with Laurie on the characterisation of our characters and I am looking forward to sharing this with our audiences in November.

How does it feel being back doing what you love, are they keeping you safe?

I feel incredibly lucky and privileged to have been given the opportunity to perform in this difficult year by Directors Nick and Charlotte Wyschna at Guildford Fringe. The safety of the audience and of ourselves is obviously of the utmost importance. A great deal of thought has gone into ensuring the performance space is a secure and safe environment for everyone. With all the preparation in place, it has left me nothing but excited for the production ahead.

What would you say to anyone thinking of coming to see Two?

Simply, please do. You’re in for a brilliant hour of theatre. It somehow seems timely to stage a play set in a pub, to remind us of the complex social interactions that take place there. Jim Cartwright’s writing brilliantly observes these interactions. Everyone involved in the production is excited about bringing his work to life and I think you are in for a real treat in these strange and difficult times.

Two starring Claire Marlein and Laurie Duncan runs Monday 2 – Saturday 7 November 2020 (excluding Friday). Tickets are on sale here

Greg is an award-winning writer with a huge passion for theatre. He has appeared on stage, as well as having directed several plays in his native Scotland. Greg is the founder and editor of Theatre Weekly


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