It's Harry's Destiny to amuse - and that's the truth!

Review by Paul Nelson

WHEN is the truth not the truth and vice versa is the mainspring of Who's Harry? at the new Pleasance space in north London.

Set to music, which in itself is extremely pleasant to hear, and with choreography that makes you want more, the play presents a school of salesmen all, as we know, tending to being pseudologists, offering free this and free that to draw our attention to whatever they are selling.

Add to this a situation where a young man falls in love while lying about himself, to a girl who is also a compulsive liar, and you find the reason for the psychiatrist.

Often quite funny, the play is a slight evening helped along by some generally excellent work by its cast who are hampered by a black curtained set and a lighting plot designed to hide them, which all too often it succeeds in doing.

As Icarus (aka Harry) Stuart Burt leads the general mayhem with a charming performance eventually winning the audience as well as the heart of Destiny (aka Harry), a girl who looks as though she has nibbled Alice's mushroom and is in the process of shrinking.

The psychiatrist, Hope, who it seems, springs eternal, is excellent played by Sarah Paul and she is at most times surrounded by a rabble of young men, notably Will Norris, Gary Shelford and Ben Watson, all of whom give quite satisfying support to the play.

I wouldn't have missed the evening, but there is not too much to recommend it. If you can't quite see the actors who are in deep shadow, and you can't quite make out what the leading lady is saying, the evening becomes a bit of an uphill climb.

Who's Harry? by Henry Fleet, Directed by Pip Pickering, Music by Symeon Cosburn, Lighting Designer Matt Britten, Choreography by Christopher Dennis. WITH: Stuart Burt (Icarus), Henrietta Clemett (Destiny), Will Norris (Raymond), Sarah Paul (Hope), Alastair Sims (Marvin), Gary Shelford (Engleburt), Ben Watson (Godfrey). Presented by Gareth W Hulbert Productions with Pleasance Theatre Festival Ltd at The Pleasance, Carpenter's Mews, North Road, London N7. Tickets 020 76091800.

RELATED LINKS: Click here for the Pleasance Islington website...
Click here for the official Who's Harry website...