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  • Kirsty Lawrie

Lost and Found by The Counterminers: A Review

“What it lacks in storyline, it makes up for with cheeky and entertaining characters, brilliant set and costume design, and a bopping soundtrack” — Kirsty Lawrie for The Broad

Back for their fifth year at the Fringe, The Counterminers hit the scene with their new production Lost and Found. Sister show to 'Hersterectomy' and 'With A Smile’, this diverting and drunken play follows university student Maeve and her friends on a wild night out in Glasgow.

Making her way downtown, we first see main character Maeve (played by Megan Gall) bopping along to Vanessa Carlton as she takes the bus through the city. Maeve is messy. She cracks jokes, makes funny faces, and speaks her mind (mostly). We’re drawn into her world as she facetimes two uni friends on their way to visit her home— “It’s a shithole, but it’s my shithole”, as she introduces it.

In an engrossing portrayal of forced friendship, her bubbly uni friends (Lucy Melrose and Daisy Casemore) are awkwardly brought together with two Glaswegian school mates (Annie Ferguson and Jemima Jayne). In Maeve’s small, pink, childhood bedroom, their fidgety silences are filled with complimentary small talk, nippy remarks, and cringe-worthy fake laughs.

It’s clear that it will take something big to bring these girls together, and with the uneasy addition of mysterious character Jazz (Noor Kabbani), they head out into the night. What follows is, in my opinion, the best part of the play.

With seamless transitions, the actors use and move the set— each snippet we see of the night in question is sewn together by the hubbub of a busy club layered over thumping music. Bodies shoving against you, shouting at bartenders over loud music, peeing with friends, terrible dancing, drunken kisses and likely losing someone in the toilet, The Counterminers perfectly portray the snapshot memories left after a night out.

The next day, in a strange amalgamation of scenes where Maeve searches for her lost phone, she meets a number of eclectic and energetic characters. Again portrayed wonderfully by The Counterminers, less in a relatable sense and more in a wildly funny way: the same two actors (Matt O’Malley and Oscar Bryan) don different clothes and new questionable accents every few minutes; as an audience member you can tell it’s good fun.

As the play comes to an end the two parts of Maeve's life seem to be finally fitting together as her uni friends put it: “We loved it. Well… we hated it, but we’ll never forget it”.

In a some-what hurried happy ending, Jazz and Maeve are left alone. Maeve is flippant in her explanation, “I don't know why I was worried”. They kiss and the play comes to its conclusion, whereby I was left yearning for further insight. With no real development of both characters' struggles or how they overcame them, their happy ending lacked both resolution and realness for me.

As a result, it’s easy to identify the Lost in this play but less the Found. Parts are very true to life— I found the friendships and characters easy to relate to as a student— yet the rest of the story felt as though it were pressed for time. Overall, if you're looking for a fun, lively play, then Lost and Found is for you. What it lacks in storyline, it makes up for with cheeky and entertaining characters, brilliant set and costume design, and a bopping soundtrack.


4/5 stars

Friday 25th August and Sunday 27th August at 18:10.

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