When actor Daniella Isaacs interviewed her Jewish, 102-year-old Great Aunty Nancy in 2013, she found out that in her early twenties, Nancy declined a wedding proposal because the proposer was Christian. Through interviews with young Londoners, Isaacs along with writer Karla Crome and director Rosy Banham devised Mush and Me, an exploration into what life is like for people involved in interfaith relationships today. The result is a pristine piece of theatre, convivial and light hearted, but with a serious message that will make you question your own beliefs and values.
Gabby (Isaacs) and Mush (David Mumeni) meet whilst working in a call centre. Gabby is Jewish, Mush is Muslim. Mush doesn't drink, Gabby drinks like a fish. Both don't eat bacon but share a love of humous and, over the course of the play, both fall head over heels in love with each other. But being in an interfaith relationship isn't easy, especially when it comes to telling parents, one of whom has just been diagnosed with a terminal illness.
Mumeni's performance is outstanding, both in terms of his comic timing and in his versatility. The same can be said for Isaacs who, whilst having less of the punchlines, commands the stage and brings a truth to the piece that really hits home.
What also strikes me about this production is the design. At the Fringe you generally have five minutes to get into the space and a budget equivalent to nothing, but designer Carla Goodman and director Rosy Banham have to be commended for a truly beautiful set.
Mush and Me definitely sits in the top three things I've seen at the fringe this year and with only three performances left, I implore you to get yourself down to Underbelly Cowgate, whatever your religion.
Mush and Me runs at Underbelly Cowgate until 24 August.