Darling Boy

Original Showing: Edinburgh Festival Fringe
Review By: Brian Merriman

Assembly at George's Square
Duration 60 minutes
Written and performed by Rupert Bevan
Directed by Lucy Rossen. 

Rupert Bevan is energy and charm unleashed in his solo show from Melbourne 'Darling Boy'. It's a story that is hurled from the stage with so much power that it leaves the audience thrilled and exhausted. 

This is an emotional coming out, coming of age story, of a young romantic looking for love for the first time. Bevan wins over the audience from the outset. His boyish charm and honest innocence tugs the heart strings, as you laugh out loud at his adolescent clumsiness in the pursuit of love online, in clubs and closer to home. 

As a scriptwriter, Bevan creates characters we care about. The maturing of his relationship with his parents, whom he finally begins to see as adults, is appealing and warm. His best friends are girls, his limbs flail in all directions with unbridled excitement at the prospect of being liked. He worries, he hopes, he wonders what to say and do constantly. 

The pace of the comically poignant piece is relentless, as is the affection he engenders in his audience. He scratches all the stereotypes and sends his own up in wide-eyed wonderment. His emerging maturity unfurls throughout the many onstage dramas. 

By the end of this action packed hour, the 'darling boy' emerges as a lovable young man. A really strong script, very well directed by Lucy Rossen, that never falters in it's pace or sincerity. No wonder it sold out in Melbourne.