Meat (3 stars)

This article is from 2012


Solid black comedy with captivating lead that explores the danger of privilege

An exclusive dining society, an intricate and arcane set of rules, and a fabulously deranged ringleader – these are the main ingredients in the meal served up by the St Andrews students calling themselves ‘The Catherine’s Club’. Playing on an endless fascination with privilege and exclusivity that can remain undimmed even by ideological opposition, playwright Tim Foley spices things up even further here with a few shakes of cannibalism and sexual depravity.

The action takes place around a dinner table in said club, where Jasper Lauderdale dominates an otherwise decent cast as the sinisterly eccentric president, Charlie Moon. With his velvet jacket, sideswept foppish curls and deep, languorous drawl, he is a compelling caricature of dangerous privilege, born into membership of the club and relentless in his steely grip on power – and on the shoulder of the terrified newbie next to him.

More follow-through on the macabre allusions of the synopsis and opening would make the most of this fairly standard material – but it stands firm as a solid black comedy with a captivating lead.

Paradise in the Vault, 510 0022, until 19 Aug (not 13), 7.10pm, £6 (£5).


  • 3 stars

‘Undeniably disturbing … Undeniably brilliant’ (Stand). The Catherine’s Club is a male-only club at the heart of one of the oldest universities in Britain. But when its president is implicated in a major scandal, an ambitious fellow seizes his chance to take control. Six men make or break their university careers over a…

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