First trip to the Menier and what a fabulous little theatre it is. It feels like the Royal Court's more down to earth, less pretentious cousin with its cosy cafe bar, friendly staff and a strangely comforting saw-dusty smell.
There was one blot on its copy book though and I'll come to that in a moment but first, as some playwright once wrote, 'the plays the thing'. And what a punchy little play A Number is. I don't mean real fisty-cuffs like Sucker Punch over at big cuz's but boy it gives you a lot to think about during its 50 minutes performance time.
OK so playwright Caryl Churchill was on to a bit of a winner with me as I've had a fascination with cloning ever since reading Aldous Huxley's Brave New World as a teen. What she does is focus on the human response to cloning and raises questions about attitude towards life.
The story unfolds through separate encounters between a father and three of his cloned sons played by Timothy and Samuel West. Incidentally I can't imagine ever finding a production as satisfying without an actual father and son playing those parts.
It's opening encounter sees son Bernard, confronting the father who raised him about his discovery of a cloned brother and the possibility that he is just one of 'a number'.