The people behind the programming at Liverpool’s Lantern Theatre Company must be pretty pleased with themselves – they couldn’t have picked a better time to put on Scouse: a Comedy of Terrors than late 2016. Never have so many people wanted to split away from the rest of the Britain, be it because of Brexit, a nagging sense of nationalism, or simply because they can’t be bothered living on this island of loonies any longer. Scouse, first staged in 1996, taps right into this feeling.
Let me set the scene: it’s Liverpool in the 1980s, and the local council decides to declare independence from the UK, the EU, the UN…you name it, they want to leave it. Unfortunately, like a jilted and jealous lover, everyone else is not quite so willing to wave them goodbye. Instead, they send in the army.
Scouse is directed by Margaret Connell, who took over the Lantern Theatre Company with her daughter Siobhan in 2011. The show will be hosted at The Dome Grand Central, a former methodist church that should do a good job of conjuring up late-80s Liverpool.