DOI: 10.5040/9781784601027.00000003
Scenes: 9. Roles: Male (1) , Female (1) , Neutral (0)

Liz Lochhead's Quelques Fleurs is a short play for two performers, a portrait of a marriage, both funny and tragic. It was first performed by Nippy Sweeties Theatre Company at the Assembly Rooms, Edinburgh Festival Fringe, on 10 August 1991.

In the play, Verena and her husband Derek speak in intercut monologues from two isolated spots on stage. Verena’s scenes span from 24 December 1990 until 23 December 1991, the date of Derek’s single journey – 'shown backwards from drunk till sober and measured by a dwindling mountain of beer cans' – from his Aberdeen home to Glasgow. The couple are childless and their marriage is unravelling. Gradually we enter the hearts of both of them as they reveal the hidden pain behind their union.

In her Foreword to Liz Lochhead: Five Plays (Nick Hern Books, 2012), Lochhead writes 'This is a play about two people, one of whom talks and talks (all year!) to not say what matters to her, until, after all that repressing, out it comes; and one who, in a single day at the end of that year, is taken backwards in time from being incoherently drunk and almost home to what we know will be hell, back to being sober and telling us the whole truth at the beginning of his journey. At the end of the play. ... Sound confusing? The interlaced structure, with its two different time frames, one for each character, is, I admit, hard to bring off. A flaw I see no solution for. The audience do seem to catch on fine, though.'

The premiere production at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 1991 was performed by Liz Lochhead and Stuart Hepburn.

From Liz Lochhead: Five Plays


Nick Hern Books

Liz Lochhead

ISBN: 9781848422940

Series: NHB Modern Plays

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