REVIEW: TRACKSIDERS

WHAT the **** are you looking at, screams the girl at the audience. This is the raw language of Tracksiders, which follows the lives four teenagers who spend their lives drinking, smok

TRACKSIDERS - CAMDEN FRINGE

The Lion & Unicorn, Gaisford Street, NW6

"WHAT the **** are you looking at," screams the girl at the audience. This is the raw language of Tracksiders, which follows the lives four teenagers who spend their lives drinking, smoking, and spray-painting trains.

But this is not a play just out to shock. It is about emotions, relationships, and what we all have in common.

After this outburst, the girl (Olivia Edwards) - whose middle name really is "Trouble" - breaks down, unable take more time in detention.

The father of the second girl Tinks (Alice Hinsley), after berating his daughter, takes a toke of her spliff.

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And, after being robbed, an elderly shopkeeper, rather than remonstrating, reminisces about her own misspent youth.

Despite their extreme, escapist lives, we can empathise with all four characters - who hasn't wanted to scream at an unhelpful bureaucrat, as Trouble does?

The four-piece cast impress as both youngsters and adults. Todd Von Joel is, in turns, charismatic, vulnerable and profound as their leader, Butterz.

And Toby De Angeli, as Scribbler, perfectly plays the kind of boy who follows others into mischief - but is most likely to end up in trouble as a result.

This is a thought-provoking piece and a welcome demystification of life the other side of the tracks.

- STEPHEN HEIDARI-ROBINSON

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