Review: Two Men Talking

Amy Bourke June 12, 2007
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In a tiny, intimate venue in the heart of Whitehall, two men perform a play that records their lives as gay, Jewish South Africans.

Two Men Talking starts in sweltering South Africa where Paul Browde and Murray Nossel are schoolchildren during Apartheid.

Their tale takes us takes us to New York and London, through their experiences of career struggles, coming out as gay and dealing with HIV and AIDS, and finally recalling their reunion in America.

Two Men Talking is about the power of storytelling, and is a story that has toured the world from Australia to Edinburgh, earning praise along the way from the likes of Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

There is no set-in-stone script; every performance, the play is subtly different, which means that the atmosphere of the night relies hugely on the reactions of the audience.

Do they gasp in surprise or flinch in fear at crucial moments?

The play is remarkably compelling, given the sparse set.

The plot is a series of stories, with the double-act calling on each other to help out like small children playing – “You be the teacher!”

The play lasts only 75 minutes, with no interval. Browde’s depiction of the school bullies is chilling, but hilarious, while Nossel’s facial expressions are worth the very reasonable ticket price alone.

Two Men Talking is at Trafalgar Studios, London, until June 23rd. Ticket prices range from £15 to £22.50.

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