The Door, Birmingham Rep, Wednesday 2nd March 2022
Will Jackson has ‘acquired’ three hundred second-class stamps. He decides to use them to write letters to family, friends, anyone and everyone. The result is this one-man show, where he reads out the letters he writes and also the responses. He gets in touch with a former flatmate, while engaging in a post-it war with his current one. Purporting to be a nine-year-old boy, he complains to Cadbury’s and is rewarded with freebies (which he shares with the audience). He catches up with an old crush, and there’s an ominous letter from the NHS…
Jackson’s expressive performance is instantly likeable and engaging. Don’t be fooled by the apparent chaos of the set, strewn with envelopes and boxes – he knows exactly what he’s doing, with perfect timing. There is some killer lip-syncing and, for a plus-size guy, he’s certainly got smooth moves. The story is underscored by an eclectic soundtrack of power ballads, disco hits, and Willy Wonka.
There is poignancy too as he deals with the contents of the NHS letter, but Jackson is a man you can’t keep down for long. The show touches on a couple of negative experiences of gay men in the UK but, as Will demonstrates, we can always bounce back, with our sense of humour as armour.
Exuberantly executed, laugh-out-loud funny, and redolent with humanity and warmth, the 60-minute run time flies by, and we leave, inspired to put pen to paper ourselves and reconnect with someone we haven’t heard from – but perhaps without nicking the postage stamp.
A lovely piece of theatre. Writer-performer Will Jackson and Quick Duck Theatre certainly deliver first-class entertainment. He gets my stamp of approval. I’ll stop now.