Abraham Parker Clare, Aristocracy, Baker Lane Theatre Company, Bigotry, Class struggle, Edinburgh Festival, Edinburgh Fringe, Emily Wright, James Oglethorpe, Masses Against the Classes, Sophia Porter, Sophie Peacock, Theatre Review, Yahs
I must work harder to conquer my bigotry. They are called “yahs” – kids with rich parents who speak in an aristocratic estuary English, a modern bastardisation of what Evelyn Waugh had described as “the organ voice of England, the hunting-cry of the ancien regime.” If one regarded gay people as being intrinsically comical, this would be rightly condemned as discrimination, so why does it remain acceptable for me to dismiss these yahs as repulsive buffoons? To my eye, they are sheep-brained and puffed up with all the assurance of their wealth. Why does a seriously hot girl, such as Emily Wright from Sophie Peacock‘s new play, “Pulse,” become immediately unattractive as soon as she opens her mouth and those buttery “yahs” float out into the air? It is as if she has turned herself into a toad.
Anyway, I am watching “Pulse,” which is playing late afternoons in the Surgeon’s Hall, and this scrappy and ultimately rather boring play has been hatched from a nest of yahs. Even if the actors all spoke in Lancashire accents, I doubt that I would find this play a masterpiece, but I would probably be more sympathetic towards it. I would make a kind remark about a handsome actor, or tap my feet to the music. With these yahs, however, I sit quaking with hatred.
The funniest thing about this play is that they have a problem with the water pressure at Surgeon’s Hall, and whenever a toilet is flushed somewhere in the building, the pipes emit loud flatulent noises, invariably during a scene of incredible seriousness. It gives the impression that the cast are all farting like cattle. I am fighting to suppress my giggles.
At one point I try to fall asleep, but the cast are all yelling at each other and I cannot switch off. I fantasise about sodomising the pretty student sitting in front of me, but this scenario is so far fetched that it only makes me feel depressed. Perhaps I should start clapping loudly during one of the scene changes, and it would hand the cast an opportunity to end their interminable play. But I am not brave enough. When the end finally comes, the audience applauds with gusto, probably from relief.
Do I really despise them, or am I just disappointed with myself? I must work harder to conquer my bigotry.