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Published On: Wed, Apr 5th, 2017 at 8:04pm

Theatre preview: Charlie Sonata – The Lyceum

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Why the glass is always half empty…

The drinking-man’s, alcohol-poisoned version of Sleeping Beauty is a bewitching mirror on life.

Directed by Matthew Lenton, starring Sandy Grierson in the title role, Charlie Sonata follows the tender-hearted, booze-soaked Charlie, ‘Chick’ to his pals, who arrives back in Scotland for a reunion with old friends Gary (Kevin Lennon) and Jackson (Robbie Jack), only to find Gary’s daughter has been the victim of a life-changing accident. With redemptive purpose, Chick wades out into the city night and, amidst the dancing streetlights and screams of sirens, embarks on a quest to save her life.

Speaking of the production, playwright Douglas Maxwell said: “Charlie Sonata is an alcohol-poisoned version of Sleeping Beauty. And it’s also true. Kind of. It’s a very special play for me.

“It was written with a director and an actor in mind (Matt and Sandy) but not a theatre.  The fact it’s going on The Lyceum’s stage is a thrill and an honour.  I’ve never had a show on here and I’m hoping it will be magical and intimate and grand and funny and moving and all those things that plays in The Lyceum can be.”

Director Matthew Lenton said: “Charlie Sonata is, in my opinion, the most beautiful play Douglas Maxwell has written. That it’s being performed at The Lyceum as part of David’s (Greig) first season is brilliant for me, but also for Lyceum audiences, who will get to see a funny, soulful and moving new play.”

Artistic Director David Greig said: “Douglas Maxwell is the Scottish writer who has influenced me the most; he has the heart, comedy, and storytelling brio that can’t fail to lift the spirits. Watching one of his plays is like being lifted off your feet and swept along on a crazy night out with your best friend.

“I first read this play on a plane journey. The story of charming hopeless Charlie on a mission to save a life had me hooked right away. When I found myself in tears at the end, with my hand grabbing the knee of the passenger beside me, having to explain to the stewardess that I was all right, “it’s just a play I was reading”, I knew I had to bring it to the stage”

Charlie Sonata

Tuesday 2nd May, 7:30pm

The Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh, 30b Grindlay Street, Edinburgh, EH3 9AX


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