FRIED EGGS, a bizarre love story about two unusual sisters and one very understanding man, written by Lindsay J Sedgwick and starring Karen Connell, comes to the Town Hall studio next week.
Staged by Dublin's Moonstone Productions in conjunction with Galway’s Dodo Theatre, it tells the story of Eloise, who spends her life consoling men her sister Lulu has slept with and then dumped. If Lulu could only be a little more inhibited, it might make Eloise’s life easier. When Eloise loses her job because of Lulu, the last thing she wants is to meet her sister’s latest conquest, Brendan. Yet Brendan might be the one person who can make everything right.
This funny, lyrical and quirky play shows the ups and downs of life and love and the importance of accepting all the different parts of yourself however unusual they may be. Fried Egg’s three characters are all portrayed by Karen Connell and ahead of the play’s Galway run she talked to me about its themes and content. She first describes the relationship between Eloise and Lulu.
“When we meet them, Lulu is getting incredibly out of control both with money and men and Eloise has no idea,” she tells me. “Eloise is undertaking this very painful tidying-up process, she’s not OK with the way Lulu comes in and leaves a trail of destruction. Yet there is also a lot of tenderness between the two of them, the heavy hitting back and forth between them is leading toward their coming together, and by the end of the play we find some resolution.
"It comes with the arrival of this guy Brendan who stays around and seems able to handle their different personalities. That seems to add a lot of lightness to the character of Eloise who has previously been very uptight. She is just trying to hold it all together any way she can. She’s very angry at Lulu but underlying it is the desire for the two of them to co-exist happily.”
One intriguing element in the play is the possibility that Eloise and Lulu are actually two sides of the same person. The suggestion of personality disorder gives Fried Eggs a note of topicality with mental health being a much-debated issue these days.
“Lulu’s personality has no inhibitions; she could be a part of Eloise that Eloise struggles to express,” Karen acknowledges. “Lindsay’s writing throughout is great, it’s like a little treasure trail; there are a lot of little clues in stuff that happens and is said as to what’s the real story between these two personalities. It’s a very interesting dynamic to play out and every time I do the show I learn something new from it.”
Fried Eggs is Karen’s first ever solo show and she has relished its challenge. “It’s very meaty," she says. "It’s probably the biggest thing I have taken on in theatre,” she declares. “It took a lot of work, it was three months of full-time absorption in it. It’s amazing from Lindsay’s perspective that she has managed to fit in so much into a 45/50 minute show.”
Fried Eggs runs from Tuesday June 14 to Friday 17 at 8.30pm. Tickets are available from the Town Hall on 091 - 569777 or www.tht.ie