A troubled examination of the language of love when placed at its Orwellian limits.
If you think Twitter’s original 140 character limit was extreme, imagine a world where that was applied to real life, and each person allowed only to speak 140 words per day. That’s the premise of Sam Steiner’s debut play Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons, serving as the virgin production of director/producer duo Adeeb & Shai (Adeeb Fazah and Mohamad ‘Shai’ Shaifulbahri).
First premiering at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2015, Lemons is a minimalist two-hander play following young couple Bernadette (Tia Guttensohn) and Oliver (Jamil Schulze) as they navigate the usual troubles of any new relationship, paired with the new normal of the aforementioned Hush Law. Because of its unique premise, what would normally make for a simple look at young love goes above and beyond that, as it explores the complexities of language and communication, examining the way authorities limit speech and how speech itself limits us.
Lemons presents a refreshingly original script with a smart premise offering plenty of food for thought on the nature of language and free speech, though perhaps inherently problematic and difficult to saddle a pair of young actors with, making it a challenging first production for Adeeb & Shai. Ultimately though, if you can push past its initial flaws, Lemons is less emotional pulp than it is intellectual zest, eventually unveiling itself to possess a highly relevant story and being a keen thought experiment that will make you think twice before you next open your mouth to speak.
Photo Credit: Adeeb & Shai
Performance attended 4/4/18
Lemons, Lemons, Lemons, Lemons, Lemons plays at the Aliwal Arts Centre Multi-purpose Hall from 4th – 7th April. Tickets available here