The Level 3 workers are racing against time to reach their quota of Smiley Faces, but are they happy enough? Adam, the Level 3 manager has to face the wrath of Level 12 if his team do not reach their quota. Dave is perhaps not as happy as Adam would like him to be and Jen, well, wants Adam's job. Enter the New Girl, who has no name, and Dave realises that perhaps there could finally be something to be happy about after all.
Happy Hour is an hour long quirky physical comedy based on the concept of our fascination with the' Happiness Industry.' Writer Chris Fittock's research included intensive two-week improvisation workshops with the cast and director Elinor Randle, in which Happy Hour was created.
Clever set design by Lois Maskell allowed the actors to disappear under desks and hide in boxes. The backdrop of filing cabinets meant that props could be stored and a big sturdy desk doubled as Adam's office. There is certainly a lot of material that has been packed into this show, and these four spend a lot of that time hurtling about the stage, hanging upside down from ladders or folding themselves into boxes. As fast paced as this show is there are moments where they slow down enough and this is when you get to see their personalities shining through.
Adam Davies as Adam does a fine job of the boss who wants to be everyone's friend, with just enough smarminess and bad jokes. Jennifer Essex as Jen is wonderful as the ambitious employee who has her eyes on higher levels. The relationship between New Girl, played by Eleni Edipidi and Dave, Ian Cook, is really touching as you see this develop and Edipid's character is charming to watch.
This is Tmesis Theatre's 7th production, and they continue to be one of the best companies to produce physical theatre. Happy Hour is packed with madness but beautifully choreographed and brilliantly performed.