The first act opens with a sprightly little nun dancing to a song that’s “holy… inappropriate” whilst pouring two pints of Guinness. One of the glasses is for her, Winnie, and the other for her friend Stephen, who compensates for his shyness by being adventurous and obliging with his music. Spirits are high and the black stuff is settling nicely, until a brick comes hurtling through the window, bringing silence to the revelry and spoilage to the drink.
Looking out onto the street, Winnie discovers that on the other side of the brick is Kayleigh, a young tearaway with an inquisitive nature and a chip on her shoulder. Though a big fan of smoking, drinking and singing at the top of her voice, Winnie is still very much a nun, whose kindness leads her to invite Kayleigh in for a cup of tea and a heart-to-heart. An unlikely friendship follows, infused with music, laughter and solidarity.
However, each member of the trio soon discovers very different things that will affect their individual lives forever. Whilst one of these changes can be overcome and another turned into a celebration, the third will leave an indelible mark that not even Guinness and song can undo. How they cope is up to them, presenting major tests of character and a world of possibility.
Folk is the new bittersweet comedy from award-winning Tom Wells, the chap behind the equally excellent Jumpers for Goalposts. Set in Withernsea, this is a down-to-earth, touching and laugh-out-loud show about unexpected friendships, making the best of a bad situation, and accepting that when life gives you lemons, you should put them behind your living room’s cocktail bar.
Running until Saturday 14 May at Hull Truck Theatre, you can book your tickets by calling 01482 323638 or online at hulltruck.co.uk.
Reviewer: Rich Sutherland