A play has just opened in the West End, quirkily titled 'Lemons, Lemons, Lemons, Lemons, Lemons' (that's five 'lemons'). Starring 'Poldark's Aidan Turner and 'Victoria's Jenna Coleman, it is described as 'a tender and funny rom-com' but it's so much more than an evening's light entertainment.
The premise of the play, written by Sam Steiner, is that a law is proposed, and then passed, where each citizen is limited to speaking only 140 words a day.
The two characters, Oliver and Bernadette haven't long been a couple. They think they've told each other all the important bits about their lives before the law is passed, but of course things are never that simple. So how do they cope with this limit on their conversation? What are the words they choose to say to each other? What does this limit on communication mean to the balance of power in society? When do you use up your words to avoid dealing with the difficult 'stuff', and when do you just start singing?!
This was just the most amazing tonic. It was lovely to be at a London theatre again for one thing, but it was so refreshing to watch a warm, funny, lively play which also had moments of poignancy and quiet, and which left us all with so much to ponder and discuss.
Very often deep and difficult issues are presented in gritty, dark, angst-driven rants on the stage, I find, which may be creatively formidable but leave me wrung through and despondent. This was exciting, energising and stimulating while also making some interesting and challenging points about communication and power. Go and see it if you can - or buy the book!
Thank you for reading.