BY KATHRYN PIERCE
In collaboration with @SomewhereEDI
Blunt and beautiful, Sod’s Law is an afternoon delight. [star rating = 4/5]
Aristocrat Lord Hicks seems to know a thing or two about queer life, and as I shared a late afternoon tea with him, and 35 other audience members, we were treated to a marvellous musical gay history lesson, beginning with King Henry VIII’s Buggery Act of 1533 and ending with the sheer bad manners of Grindr and 21st century dating.
Like an all-seeing, all-knowing minstrel he wistfully presents a rousing retrospective, with acerbic asides, and a haughty air best described as Judge Rinder channelling Dr Frank. N. Furter.
On our whimsical whistle-stop, the Lord holds open the hidden doors of LGBT history and lets us in. Adding the hysterical to the historical, our queer past is also in very safe hands here, with diverse LGBT stories getting a look-in, not just the usual cisgender gay male ones.
Having tea with the Lord is akin to spending time with a dear queer wealthy friend, whose obvious talent and accomplished musicality mean that sad and difficult times in the LGBT timeline are handled with compassion, while the highs and lows of gay culture are joyously celebrated by an ornately-worded, rude and frantically-funny script. I can honestly say I have never enjoyed gay insults so much in my entire life.
With a ukulele, a piano and a few simple images, in 50 magical minutes I was entertained and educated, mocked and shocked, and privy to beautifully-executed ballads like the Pretty Policeman (lavatorial) Blues, along with well-placed and often haunting snippets of familiar songs that were the soundtrack to many key moments of the 20th century and my own life.
As the whole of the (very hot) room hangs onto Lord Hicks’ raised eyebrow, I revelled in the withering wit that exemplifies the best of drag humour. There’s also a knowing nod to the future in this caustic cautionary tale, and a call for the LGBT community to stick together and support each other.
There’s a lot of love in this show – it’s well-written, excellently performed (GEORGE) and produced (JOSH COCKCROFT). The only hetero thing about it is that it’s straight to the point. Make time for the good Lord this Fringe.