Rebecca Carrington is Out to Lunch

Jill Daly finds a world of talent in the back of a truck

The phone hasn’t stopped since nine and the photocopier’s on the blink. The office is stuffy and your in-tray is blocking out the daylight. Come one o’clock you’re going to need a real break before the bell for Round Two. In the back of a truck in Belfast’s Writers Square this month, you just might find it.

Out to Lunch is a new micro-festival  from the Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival. In the fully-equipped Theatre Truck you can catch fantastic home-grown and international acts. And the £5 entrance also includes a terrific lunch.

The experience was wonderful from beginning to end. My friend and I were welcomed by friendly staff serving delicious lunch (spicy vegetarian pasta or chicken curry), which we then took into the truck itself.

Decorated with old fashioned wallpaper complete with floral border, it was reminiscent of your grandma’s living room. We sat in rows of two or three on either side of a narrow aisle - a bit like an Easyjet flight, but with much better food and in-flight entertainment.

Out to LunchOn the menu was Rebecca Carrington’s act Me and My Cello. Fresh from a sell-out success at the Edinburgh Festival, Carrington, who has been described as 'elegant musical stand up', found herself playing to a Belfast audience in a very unlikely venue.

She is a musician/linguist/comedienne, and equally talented in all three areas. Performing spoofs of Irish jigs, Edith Piaf, bagpipes, Pavarotti and even Bulgarian Folk song, Carrington took us on a hilarious musical expedition around the world.

With an astonishing musical talent, spot on comedic timing and an ability to imitate accents that could only be achieved by someone with a musical ear, Carrington kept us entertained for a full hour. All thoughts of the office were far away as we were swept away by her impressive musical talent and entertained by her wacky comedy.

I was amazed to hear such accurate, funny, and off the wall music. She played a song from a Bollywood musical, in the style of a true Bollywood star, and even managed to evoke a full jazz band with just her voice and the cello. What can I say - it has to be heard to be believed.

The Theatre Truck has a charming and very intimate ambience, and it was definitely one of the most inventive theatre experiences I’ve had to date. These days, theatres are finding it increasingly difficult to get ‘bums on seats’, but the promise of a free lunch in a truck at lunch time just might do the trick.