Rough Trade

by | Jul 27, 2023

By George Dixon

I always find that any production performed by the originator (writer) tends to enhance the intent and meaning of the script, as the interpretation is presented from the writer’s perspective.

Rough Trade is a one-person play written and performed by Katie Pollock.

Directed by Anthony Skuse.

It is one production that does not disappoint.

This one-act performance takes you on a 60-minute journey that is highly engaging and multi-layered.

Rough Trade has several different meanings; some of it is sexual, while other meanings are not.

This production covers a balance of discussions from sex toys to a trading site that exchanges anything for something else, and no money is exchanged. However, the general commodity is the humble lemon.

This clever script highlights various aspects of a life challenged by capitalism and the trappings of the anti-capitalism of simple exchange trading.

It is based on real-life events, including online trades, which are used to punctuate various situations.

The simple staging lends very well to the story, which sometimes points out that “Less is More” while maintaining the focus on the performer.

Due to the flexibility of staging and props, Rough Trade is fully transferable to any location.

A full copy of the script is also available for purchase at the box office.

The audience is mesmerised by the skills and talent of Pollock, who, in collaboration with Skuse’s staging and lighting direction, provides a strong balance of dialogue and audience interaction.

Like several other good short plays, Rough Trade has its place. The performance is solid with a hint of vulnerability; the humour is well-placed and slightly obscure, which fits well within the subject matter. It is entertaining while presenting an exciting message which is worthy of telling.

Note: This production is rated for Ages 15+ (Rated M) It contains some coarse language, discussion of violence, and adult themes.

Image: Clare Hawley

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