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Review – 2Gorgeous4U – Royal Court Studio   

AN immediate hit with audiences when it first appeared at Liverpool Theatre Festival last autumn, Mark Davies Markham’s small but perfectly formed comedy 2Gorgeous4U made has a welcome return to the stage, this time in the cosy confines of the Royal Court Studio.

Clare is reflecting on the rise and fall of the ‘90s pop duo 2Gorgeous4U, a brief but heady place in the limelight for her and then BFF Tina. Like so many disco sensations of the period their friendship imploded along with the stardom, so the invitation to reform their act to appear at a festival fills Clare with mixed feelings.

In the space of an hour, Lynne Fitzgerald paints a vivid picture of Clare as she recounts the history of the friendship from the slightly less glamorous surroundings of her South Road spa and beauty treatment business in Waterloo. She is hindered in the storytelling by a phone that keeps ringing and frequent interruptions from customers, her voice switching from Desperate Scousewife to Hyacinth Bucket each time she picks up the receiver.

In between dealing with her clients and her overbearing mother, Clare swipes this way and that on her dating app, juggling in her mind with the highs and lows of her past, present and future. Davies Markham’s dialogue is as sharp and witty as we have come to expect from him, giving Fitzgerald a rich seam of characters to mine, and she carves them all out with precision and detail. Under the pin sharp direction of James Baker, her performance is a tour-de-force blend of rounded portraits, vignettes and quick fire one liners.

One of the theatrical joys that really came into its own as theatre emerged from the darkness last year is the one-person show, and 2Gorgeous4U is a great example of just how much fun can be achieved using one actor to create many voices and faces. To work, what it needs is a tight script, an eagle-eyed director and a performer who can really deliver on word painting and multi-role playing, and the trio who have created this show are perfect fit for each other.

Star rating – 4 stars

Review by Nigel Smith

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