The queue outside the Dome was buzzing with anticipation as the crowds mounted for the day’s sold out show. On only it’s second performance, Nina’s Got News did not disappoint.
The lights came up and an onrush of dialog, one liners and punchy jokes flooded the stage. Frank Skinner’s playwriting debut is warm, full of heart and character, each joke batted back and forth in a style that is reminiscent of Victoria Wood.
Our protagonist Nina is young, strong and self possessed, delivered with mesmerising stage presence by Jessica Clark. Every gesture, stride and smile was delivered with ease, giving us a glimpse of a character far bigger than the story at hand.
Whilst all three performers delivered a strong performance as an ensemble, Clark and Breffni Holahan as Vanessa really shone, each landing swift punchlines effortlessly. Rob Auton’s Chris starts off as a bit of a slow-burner, but as the play progressed, his character started to pick up pace, gaining depth as we stepped deeper into Nina’s world.
All coverage of this play has been deliberately equivocal, with Skinner keeping details of the ‘news’ vague, describing the story simply as questioning whether exes can be friends after a break up. It’s worth keeping the mystery in tact to enjoy this play to its fullness as it was a joy to watch the surprise unfold.
If you’re looking to discover the secret to friendships with your ex, you may be left wanting, however this play is nothing short of magical.
Nina’s Got News by Frank Skinner, Pleasance Dome, Aug 4-26th 2:50pm