Janie Phillips finds this new play at the Liverpool Playhouse too long but says it suggests a promising future for the writer
Scrappers is writer Daniel Matthews' debut play, having first being aired at the Everyword new writing festival in 2012. Now it's made its home in the Playhouse Studio - a nurturer of new talent.
This is a story about adversity, working in an ever changing world where progress waits for no man, and there is certainly no room for three honest working scrappers, Ken and his apprentices Morse and Ryan. They are the last ones standing - literally - as day by day, the bulldozers get nearer and nearer to the front gate of their scrap yard, having destroyed everything else in its path.
The story takes a side step as Jodie, back from London and down on her luck, makes a beeline for the yard, which had been a place of familiarity and memories where she grew up with her dad. Friendships, of sorts, are made, but it doesn't quite work out.
Ged McKenna plays a splendid role as Ken, who is determined to keep going and nearly loses everything in the process. David Judge plays a vulnerable but very endearing character in Ryan, Molly Taylor as Jodie brings out her energy and attitude, while John McGrellis as Morse has some of the best one liners in the show and helps to balance out the characters.
Though slow to start, and perhaps a tad too long with the running time of 2 hours 15 minutes, this is still a strong debut play and writer Daniel Matthews is definitely a name to watch out for in the future.
- Janie Phillips