I braved the chilly weather on a mid-March evening for a trip to the Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds to see The Scary Bikers, a new politically charged, cycle-powered comedy.
The piece is written and directed by John Godber – who has worked with the Theatre Royal Wakefield since 2011 to produce a variety of plays, both new and old. The Scary Bikers is his latest innovation, and it’s as fresh and poignant as can be. Depicting a tale of two sides – leave or remain, all while there’s hope of love in the air.
A play with a heavy focus on all things Brexit may sound off-putting because frankly most of us feel tired and woeful when we hear that word, however, the perspective on why the leavers voted the way they did feels painfully accurate and is a decision I think a vast number have come to regret. It doesn’t invalidate those who voted leave, as it fairly showcases two sides to the story and the way that comes across is so clever. You can tell there has been a deep level of research poured into the play.
Though, it isn’t all about the politics, for our story officially starts when Don (John Godber – yes he acts too!) and Carol (Jane Thorton) meet in the most unlikely of circumstances, through their shared loss of loved ones. In time, the two start a new beginning, but a bike ride through Europe tests their budding romance to the extreme, and the road is certainly rocky when politics gets involved.
Narrated to us is a hilarious, heartfelt and relatable tale of two friends who bond while reminiscing the past, debating the present, and looking to the future; oh and there might be a tandem involved!
The partnership John Godber and Jane Thornton share is truly a joy to watch, there is such a natural chemistry and charm. One minute they will have you in a fit of giggles, the next you’ll be clutching your heartstrings. I certainly want to see more from this brilliant creative team, so I’ll definitely be keeping my eye out for future productions they’re involved in.
Overall, this show reminds me exactly why it’s so important to support local theatres and small-scale productions. It’s a really cleverly crafted piece of work, that had the audience completely hooked and consistently laughing in all the right places. It made for a wonderful evening out, and I’d certainly recommend it.
The Scary Bikers runs at the Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds until Wednesday 21st March. For more information or to book tickets visit www.theatreroyal.org. It’s also touring with remaining dates in Poole, Newcastle, Scarborough, Bromsgrove, Sale, Huddersfield, and Doncaster.