Before you ask, dear Adelaideans – no, this is not a sarcastic title for an hour-long whinge-fest about our dubious public transport system. Quite the opposite.
In Love Letters to the Public Transport System, Molly Taylor tells three true stories of lives enriched by public transport. The show is about taking a moment (or in Taylor's case, a years-long quest) to express your gratitude to the strangers that transport us daily – to work, to friends, to lovers, to chance encounters, and sometimes, to joy.
The intercut tales are of Tam, the actor stuck in a rut until inspiration hits and a mission ensues to trace an old acquaintance; of Margaret, who is left reeling after a shocking discovery; and of Taylor's own journey from heartbreak to rapturous love and back again – and of her mission to track down and personally thank the drivers that took her there.
Taylor expertly constructs her monologue, with an introduction to bring the audience into the action, and a neat tucking-in of prologue and epilogue. The meat of the sandwich does take a little while to get going though, because the three stories don't seem, at first, to connect in theme or chronology. There is some dissonance to overcome before everything is smoothed out.
But smooth out it does, with Taylor's naturalistic delivery and writing style recalling a vivacious mate regaling you with their travel tales over a pint or two at the pub. Or on a long train trip, perhaps.
Taylor uses a sparse set and range of motion to allow her engaging script and delivery to come to the fore. She remains seated on a displaced double-decker's bench seat throughout the show, using only slight shifts in position to mark the shift between stories. It's a risky move, but a boring bus ride this ain't.
Taylor has a gift for bringing light and meaning to the mundane. These windows into ordinary people's lives give pause to reflect on why gratitude for all of our ordinary moments – and their role in delivering the more glorious moments – is so important. Love Letters is a warm-and-fuzzies treat from a master storyteller.
Love Letters is one of the many outstanding works of theatre on offer at Holden Street Theatres this Fringe season (Borders by Henry Naylor and Flesh & Bone among them). So drag your friends out of the city for a night, and impress them with your superb taste. You're welcome. For the scriptwriters out there, Molly Taylor is also hosting a lunchtime workshop on writing a dramatic monologue, on Thursday 22 February.