Tryst Theatre: Back on stage at Behind the Wall in Falkirk

Members of Falkirk’s Tryst Theatre are looking forward to their return to the stage after a two year absence – and they’re back with a hilarious comedy by one of Scotland’s most iconic writers.

Wednesday, 9th March 2022, 4:45 pm

Now that pandemic restrictions are easing, the Tryst members are busy rehearsing Writer’s Cramp by John Byrne, famous for classics such as The Slab Boys, Cuttin’ A Rug and Tutti Frutti.

Writer’s Cramp is a madcap satire in the style of a mock BBC-type documentary telling the life story of Francis Seneca McDade, an aspiring writer and would-be artist from Paisley.

The play will star Tryst stalwarts Jim Allan, Alan Clark, Rhona McColl and Brian Paterson.

A previous Tryst Theatre production with Brian Paterson and Rhona McColl in 'Burns, from Bard to Worse'

Jim Allan who also directs, said: “It’s John Byrne’s first play and it’s a cracker.

“At the beginning we’re introduced to the fictional Nitshill Writing Circle and the Busby Sketch Club who are celebrating the life and times of their late lamented hero FS McDade - ‘poet, philosopher, painter, sage’.

“The joke is they are all deluded idiots who think McDade is a towering genius but as the play progresses it’s clear he is clueless, a total mediocrity and an utter failure in all his artistic output.

“Disastrously seeking fame and fortune, he turns his hand to poetry, painting, journalism and literature, learns nothing from his flops, and is always broke.

Bedtime reading: Alan Clark under the covers as the eccentric mediocrity FS McDade.

“It’s a very clever satire, with Byrne taking a swipe at the cultural pretentions of the day. He sends up everything - from Oxford slang of the 1930s to fashions in the London art world in the 60s.”

Byrne says he was inspired to write the play by schoolboy adventures and pranks in magazines like the Hotspur and Wizard.

Jim added: “It’s Byrne’s surreal tongue-in-cheek wit that attracted us to the play. That, and the fact he said he wrote it secretly in his garage and explained ‘because I didnae have a car’!

“That’s exactly the kind of zany humour that drives the plot.”

Looking forward to the production, Tryst president Frank Murray said: “It’s great to be back performing again after a two-year enforced absence. We promise you a jolly evening with lots of laughs.”

Tryst are renewing their relationship with top Falkirk bar/restaurant Behind the Wall and will present the play there as part of the successful “Pizza and Play” season.

Writer’s Cramp will run in Behind the Wall from April 25-29.

Tickets, priced at £12, are now available from here