By Richard Watson

What if, in order to help you concentrate on what really matters, a new law banned everyone from speaking more than 140 words in a day?

That’s what happens to young couple Bernadette and Oliver in Sam Steiner’s witty fringe theatre hit ‘Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons.’

The Huddersfield Thespians are bringing this contemporary and topical play to the Lawrence Batley Theatre from October 18-21.

She’s a lawyer paid to talk, he’s a musician paid to play – in a world that has outlawed noise and unimportant chatter.

But what do you count as important, or unimportant? Bernadette and Oliver find themselves with only a handful of words left over at the end of each day – what should they use them to say?

What would you say, with just 140 words a day? When do you use them? Where would you? Can you even manage with just 140? Would you allow exceptions, for people to use more words – who for? What’s really worth saying anyway?

Those questions and more are explored in this bold and brilliant, tender and funny rom-com about what we say, how we say it, and what happens when we can’t say anything any more.

For this production’s cast, the Thespians are delighted to welcome two new faces, in a play with barely any set and no props(!)

Duncan Stuart plays Oliver, a musician who has been protesting against the new ‘hush law’ for months. Lucy Farrar plays lawyer Bernadette, who tries to adapt to what she knows is ‘a bad law’, even as it derails her life.

‘Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons’ began as a fringe play in 2015, before getting a professional West End revival and tour earlier this year. That production starred Jenna Coleman and Aidan Turner as Bernadette and Oliver.

Alex Watkins returns to the director’s chair after the Thespians’ sci-fi treat Dark Sublime, which audiences enjoyed at the Lawrence Batley Theatre in February last year.

“I was drawn to Lemons because of its inventive and playful use of language,” he said. “There’s a wonderful contrast between the free-flowing, naturalistic dialogue of the couple when they first meet and the considered, stilted dialogue they’re forced to adopt.

“There are so many layers of meaning we can find and build with this script, and I’m lucky to be working with a couple of great actors who also love that kind of work.

“Even amongst the Big Ideas, these characters are very real and relatable. We might not always like them or agree with them, but I always believe in them and I think audiences will too.”

And why so many lemons? Well, you’ll just have to come along and see…

‘Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons’ runs Wednesday October 18 to Saturday October 21 at the Lawrence Batley Theatre. 7.15pm plus 2pm Saturday matinee.

Tickets are £15 and can be booked HERE

Main image by: DAVID WRIGHT