Established 1978

Town Hall For Tryst's Battle Of The Sexes

Sep 15, 2002

The eternal battle of the sexes is the theme of Tryst Theatre's new autumn production which sees the Larbert club staging two marvellous one-act plays.

Award-winning Tryst's double bill will be The Bear by Anton Chekhov and April in Paris by John Godber.

Tryst President Frank Murray explained: "Both are comedies, the first written in 1888 and the second over one hundred years later. But in their different ways both speak volumes about human nature and show how close the relationship is between anger and affection."

Chekhov said The Bear was "a joke, a piece of vaudeville". Madame Popov is still in deep mourning seven months after her husband's death. She stays alone in her country house, refusing to go out or see anybody. Suddenly, Smirnov arrives and rudely insists on seeing her. Popov's late husband owed him 1200 roubles and he demands the debt be paid at once because his creditors are pursuing him.

Popov tells him to get lost. Smirnov insists, makes light of Popov's mourning, and refuses to leave. They angrily compete with one another: "Men are rude and inconstant!" "Women are fickle and manipulative!"

It turns out that Popov's husband was actually a liar and cheat, but she remains true to his memory just to show him how faithful a woman can be. Smirnov challenges her to a duel for insulting him and Popov brings out her husband's pistols. At this point Smirnov realizes that he has fallen in love with this tough, feisty woman. Popov hesitates for a moment, but they end up in each other's arms - and all this in just twelve pages!

Dorothy Tripney, Jim Cairns and Malcolm Newlands star in this hilarious short play which is directed by Jim Allan.

Meanwhile Godber's comedy April in Paris, directed by Alan Clark, is a hilarious depiction of the British abroad.

Bet and Al, played by Carol Clark and Jim Allan, lead a quiet, dull life in their small Yorkshire home. He's unemployed and locks himself away in the garden shed to paint while she is the breadwinner, spending most of her spare time entering competitions in magazines with little success.

But then Bet hits the jackpot and wins a "Romantic Break " competition. The prize, a short break in Paris by North Sea ferry, has a profound effect on the way they look at life…and on their love-hate relationship. They endure the ferry crossing, experience French cuisine and toilets, wrestle with their phrase book, climb the Eiffel Tower, and fend off would-be muggers on the Metro.

Frank added: "Tryst has already had some success this summer outside Falkirk with April in Paris. Carol Clark won "Best Actress" at the East Kilbride and Dundalk International drama festivals and at Dundalk we also won the "Best Costume Design" and "Friendliest Backstage Crew" awards."

The plays will be staged in Falkirk Town Hall Wednesday 6-Friday 8 November at 7.30pm. Tickets will shortly go on sale at the Steeple Box Office.