This comic and moving play about Scotland's radical, lesbian, gay, and feminist bookshop began in the cloakroom of Scotland's first gay nightclub. More…
In 1982, two friends Bob and Sigrid opened Lavender Menace on Edinburgh’s Forth Street. On the eve of the shop’s 5th birthday, sales assistants Paul and David take a look back at its origins, its importance, its celebration of queer culture, and how things have changed. An exploration of the love and passion it takes to make something happen and the loss that is felt when you have to let it go.
Part of Soho Playhouse's 2018 Fringe Encore Series.
See it if You have an interest in LGBTQ issues, especially if you were around in the 80’s, or if you like small plays that say a lot with a little.
Don't see it if You have no interest in LGBTQ themed works or small shows working on a budget.
See it if you'd like to see a poignant, playful homage to the 1st Scottish LGBT bookshop as told by 2 charming lads in a refreshing, original play.
Don't see it if you don't like 80s dance music; you have no interest in LGBTQ themes/history; you are completely unfamiliar with James Baldwin.
See it if you'd like to have a laugh at the ways of gay boys in 1980s Edinburgh & at the same time learn something about an emerging culture.
Don't see it if you have American ears & are unwilling to make an effort to understand English with a Scottish accent, or are averse to homo history.
See it if you want a window into 1980's gay history with a fun take that you may not be aware of or that may rekindle your feelings for that time.
Don't see it if you expect perfection as this is a fringe show, done fairly well with light props in a basic set. Scottish accents may interfere with grasp.
See it if You have an interest in LGBTQ+ history. You want to see 2 great performances. You want an inspirational story.
Don't see it if You don't like stylized and/or meta storytelling: while I liked the message & performances, this style was confusing & hard to really get.
See it if Two Scots bond over gay lit and the demise of their book shoppe. Necessary long monologues to develop closeted counter character. Smart.
Don't see it if Two actors playing five characters aren't distinct enough and that leads to time shift confusion. Stereotypes. Simple set. Gen Adm.
See it if You want to see two actors telling a love story that goes back and forth in time
Don't see it if You are looking for something other than a very low production blackbox show that as part of a festival
See it if You like intimate stories about someone's love of a moment in time. You enjoy silly banter, fun dialogue, and heartfelt moments
Don't see it if Occasionally it was a little confusing as to where they were in time and space. They would shift in the narrative, not always clearly.
See it if You enjoy LGBT history as seen through the eyes of Scotish Gays in the late 20th century.
Don't see it if You strongly dislike LGBT themes or Scotish accents.
See it if Gay bookshop in the basement of Fire Island, a gay nightclub in 80s Edinburgh. Two fine actors in fun, frenetic colloquy of gay life and lit
Don't see it if you're not high on gay theater or Scottish accents. Two very smart gay boys try to make a go of a radical gay bookshop in Thatcher-era UK.
See it if you're drawn to stories of LGBT history esp from other parts of the world. An engaging, if not predictable two-hander by a charming cast.
Don't see it if you're easily confused. The multiple characters portrayed are not clearly defined/performed and the nonlinear plot gets even muddier.
See it if This has two charming and semi-talented individuals in interesting, yet unfocused tale of Scottish gay history.
Don't see it if Even though the play is short, with the various concepts of early gay life in Scotland, the time seems to be running slow.
See it if you're gay or familiar with gay lit or like gay romance or hidden history. Cast of 2 is likeable.
Don't see it if you're not familiar with gay book titles as you may not know what they're talking about; you don't like 2 character plays, no set, gay theme
See it if You enjoy two-handers, light-hearted humor and historical fact and fiction.
Don't see it if The idea of romance between two men is anathema to you. Mildly bawdy humor is also on display.
See it if You enjoy small scale, intimate productions. You are interested in the history of gay rights.
Don't see it if A play needs to be fully successful for you to enjoy it. Some elements work, some don’t. Also, heavy accents & almost nonexistent set.
See it if you want a fun, intelligent take on what queer spaces mean to their inhabitants.
Don't see it if you're uncomfortable with plays about gay men, or hate Scottish accents.
See it if If you are interested in LGBTQ history, related through a gay love story set in an Edinburgh bookstore
Don't see it if You want a fully polished production. I found it to be on the amateurish side.
See it if you like lgbtq themes and over the top gay (but not drag) characters, with a hint of homage to the 80's & the british is fun for most part.
Don't see it if you don't like any of the above and could get lost/confised in some dated references & british humor. But seeing the 2 actors alone was fun.
See it if you enjoy meta narratives brilliantly employed to illustrate identity issues; entertaining and touching personalized history-telling
Don't see it if you have trouble following non-linear storytelling and actors playing different characters (though all are well telegraphed visually)
See it if you have a connection with Edinborough and/or the Scottish gay scene of the 1980s... or you're interested in getting a glimpse of it.
Don't see it if Non-linear narrative confuses you, you have trouble understanding Scottish accents, gay history doesn't interest you
See it if interested in queer and literary history, Britain, or memory plays. sweet love story wedged in between the shelves of memories.
Don't see it if The play has a tendency to show its cards too early and circle on itself with repeating themes. Also, queers be here. Homophobes beware