Time and Tide at The Park Theatre review – ‘a cosy, kind-hearted portrait of small town adolescent angst’

Time and Tide Park Theatre

Time and Tide at The Park Theatre review ★★★★☆ by Dylan B Jones

The newest show to grace the boards at Finsbury Parks cutely bourgeois Park Theatre is Time and Tide. Its a self-professed LGBT comic dramabut, refreshingly, the characterspersonalities, and the simple concepts of love and longing, shine brighter than issues around their sexualities.

Well-meaning and slightly dishevelled May runs a greasy spoon at the end of Cromer Pier. Shes stressed about gentrification and unrequited love (arent we all) and also endlessly but affectionately berates her young employee Nemo, a dramatic and angsty gay teen who cant wait to flee to the bright lights of London for uni. 

Her delivery man Ken is ALSO worried about gentrification and unrequited love – in fact, you could say this is a play about gentrification and unrequited love – and blusters in every so often with baskets of bread, trying to pluck up the courage to ask May out.

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Lastly we meet can-cracking geezer Daz, who slouches around and fixes microwaves among unexpected flashes of passion and anger. Hes secretly in love with Nemo, whos also his best mate.

Charmingly written by James McDermott and energetically acted, with its warm tone and gently liberal subject matter, it plays like a cosy BBC drama. The gentrification jokes are a little overused (we get it, Prets a thing!) but otherwise the writing is timely and hilarious. We want “Noise, boys, bars and regular buses” to be QX’s new tagline and some of Dazs swaggering, outrageously laddish lines are particularly side-splitting and viscerally realistic – weve all met a Daz.

The cast navigates the plays energetic story with uninhibited abandon. Wendy Nottingham is emotive and caring as May, Paul Easom entertainingly bumbling as delivery man Ken – the most entrancing performances though, come from the boys; Josh Barrow as Nemo and particularly Elliot Liburd as Daz. In their various arguments, tantrums and clumsy throes of passion, they bring unexpected intensity and drama to an otherwise fairly fluffy atmosphere.

Time and Tide will resonate with anyone who’s experienced the tribulations and frustrations of being a young person (queer or otherwise) in a small town. Its a sweet, well-meaning and instantly likeable play, perfect for blowing away the winter blues.

Time and Tide is at the Park Theatre until 29th February. Tickets available at qxtickets.com.

READ MORE related to Time and Tide at the Park Theatre review:

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