My Best Friend Drowned in a Swimming Pool is a beautifully crafted piece of writing from 20-year-old Eva O'Connor. It follows a group of teenagers coming to terms with the aftermath of their friend’s death, and is packed full of dark humour, cynicism and brutal honesty.
The performances are all incredibly strong, with particular credit going to Ruairi O'Shea who nails the comic moments, and holds the play together as a whole. The physical performances from the whole ensemble are wonderful, and the use of music is brilliant. Transitions towards the beginning are a little disjointed, but this is quickly recovered.
Sunday’s Child are a young company, but are by no means lacking in talent. The writing, considering O’Connor’s age, is of an incredibly high standard; cynical, acerbic and cutting. Sadly, towards the end of the piece the plot gets slightly confused and seems to lose direction a little. The production, directed by Sophie Fuller, is at its best when kept simple, and the twists in plot towards the end seem unnecessary.
At times the amateur nature of the company shows, with the poor stage-smoking particularly irritating, and occasionally the show can feel a little too centred on O’Connor, who plays a lead character as well as writing. Ultimately, though, this takes little away from the wonderful atmosphere, fantastic performances and some of the best new writing I’ve seen at the Fringe for years.