Dividing fourteen by Two

Two in rehearsal

Two in rehearsal - Credit: Archant

OVO, the Maltings Arts Theatre’s resident company, is preparing for its first drama of the 2015 season next week.

Two by Jim Cartwright takes place in a Lancashire pub in the late 1980s and whilst the relationship of the Landlord and Landlady is at the heart of the play, the two actors play 14 characters in total.

And that promises to be particularly challenging for David Houston because he is taking on the double task of directing as well as being one of the two actors on stage.

David has always had a strong family connection to St Albans although he spent many years touring internationally.

He also performed extensively with a repertory theatre company based in Lancashire and has been in a vast range of productions from Shakespeare to contemporary pieces across all scales of theatre.

In addition David worked in secondary education and has written over 30 one-hour plays as well as edited numerous Shakespearean texts for performance. Since returning to the area he has taken parts at the Abbey Theatre as well as playing Oberon/Theseus in Marmalade Theatre’s open air A Midsummer Night’s Dream and also performed in the Roman Theatre revival last year of Boudicca at Verulamium by Imogen de la Bere.

Of his latest role, David said: “It’s an ideal opportunity for both actors to explore a range of characters and emotions. Faye Morrison, originally from Yorkshire, is playing the Landlady and other parts. We’ve worked together before so that helps with the connection on stage.”

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He went on: “The play is an earthy, gritty, pacey, funny and profound piece of writing with elements of sharp prose poetry intertwined within the text from Cartwright. The characters range from a young boy, who has lost his dad temporarily, to an old man who drops in casually to tell the audience about his passed wife, and a young lady weary of her illicit relationships.”

David added: “We recently sat reading the play, quietly, in Waterstones, St Albans whilst indulging in a latte when we realised a number of people were listening in. They were all keen to find out about the performance details – it turned into quite a fruitful piece of promotion!”

Two will be playing at the Maltings Arts Theatre in St Albans at 8pm from next Thursday, February 12, until Saturday, February 14.

Tickets at £10/£7.50 can be purchased online at www.ticketsource.co.uk/ovo or by calling the box office on 0333 666 3366