Review: “Our Friends The Enemy”

Our Friends

The Enemy


Written & Performed by Alex Gwyther

Directed by Tom O’Brien


“We’re fighting the same enemy, just on two different sides.”


In the note in the program for Our Friends, The Enemy, Alex Gwyther, the writer and star of the one-man play about the famous Christmas Truce of World War I, shares that he feels he might have fought in the Great War in a past life.


While one might wonder which side Gwyther thinks he fought on, as he expresses in the poignant and, at times, hilarious show, it doesn’t matter. The Christmas Truce occurred when British and German soldiers looked beyond their different uniforms and celebrated the holidays together with the understanding that they were all young boys fighting a war that none of them wanted. Gwyther has thoroughly researched the truce, even staying in a trench for the experience, and vividly brings to life the fears and hopes of the boys forced to become men.


Gwyther plays the fictional James Boyce, a young Brit recounting the story in letters home. I was completely charmed by the boyish, adorable Gwyther and found him extraordinarily believable as a 1914 soldier.


We were treated to a talkback with Gwyther and director O’Brien after the performance, and hearing about Gwyther’s journey and various experiences sharing the story added a very special element to the script itself and Gwyther truly has a passion and a great respect for the story he is telling and the soldiers he is remembering. I would love to see Gwyther expand on the story with a production with a larger cast.


Our Friends, The Enemy, is a very special play about a chapter in history that reminds of that miracles are truly possible at Christmas.

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