Jumpers for Goalposts @ theSpace on the Mile
Jumpers for Goalposts is a good-natured but bittersweet play
Tom Wells’ Jumpers for Goalposts has been imported from North England for this year’s Fringe by Kite in the Storm Theatre and New Celts Production. It does not feel out of place, however, and is the captivating, funny and ultimately touching tale of Barely Athletic, an amateur five-a-side football team trying to win their local LGBT+ football tournament.
The team is a motley crew who together muddle through the tournament with a couple of wins and many losses. While they bicker and argue the onstage relationships play out well, with friendships and romances feeling believable. The relationship between Luke (Scott Johnstone) and Danny (Andrew Davies) is touchingly complex. Richard Lydecker shines in his role as Beardy and provides some of the funniest and most ridiculous moments in the show.
While the show is primarily light-hearted and jovial it is not devoid of emotional depth. The characters have to deal with grief, illness and disappointment, and the balance between humour and reflection is perfected by director Iain Davie. That said, there are times when the play loses direction if only for a moment. While the script includes ‘ums’ and ‘ahs’ and characters talking over one another, this does make the dialogue muddy in parts and could use some refinement.
Jumpers for Goalposts is a good-natured but bittersweet play. It is refreshing to see LGBT+ characters whose characters and plotlines are not defined by their sexuality. The cast is able to keep up with the pace set by Davie, ensuring the audience is entertained throughout.
Jumpers for Goalposts, The Space on the Mile, run ended
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