THE "best thing" that Selby Town Council arts officer Chris Jones saw at last year's Edinburgh Fringe was James Rowland's "genuinely wonderful piece of heartfelt storytelling theatre", A Hundred Different Words For Love.

Next Friday, December 14, Rowland presents his hit show at Selby Town Hall. "It’s basically a Richard Curtis-esque rom-com told by a wonderful, funny and terrifically engaging storyteller," says Chris. "I like to believe that all the shows we put on here are great quality, but I feel particularly invested in this one. I can vouch for it being a thoroughly brilliant piece of theatre: warm and enthralling, with a massive heart."

Three years ago, James Rowland met the love of his life; a year ago, they broke up. A Hundred Different Words For Love is Rowland's story of falling in love and landing broken-hearted. "It’s also about me being Best Man of Honour at Sarah and Emma’s wedding, and it’s the story of a quest: to find the right words to make sense of love," says James, introducing his heart-lifting tale of romance, despair and, above all, friendship that combines live music and heartache with belly laughs and a welter of words.

"I wrote A Hundred Different Words For Love because I realised that there wasn't much art made about love, so I thought I'd nip in and do the definitive work before anyone else could...Well no, obviously love is a ubiquitous subject! I just wanted to make a story with all of the fun and heartache of a good rom-com but with none of the unreality."

Summing up his enthusiasm for Rowland's topsy-turvy rom-com confessional, Chris says: "Every August I take a trip up to Edinburgh to search out the most interesting and exciting shows from the world’s largest performing arts event, and A Hundred Different Words For Love was by far and away the best show I saw there last year.

"It's a warm, enthralling, laugh-out-loud rom-com told with incredible enthusiasm and joie de vivre. For anyone who enjoys a good Richard Curtis movie, from Four Weddings And A Funeral through to Notting Hill and Love Actually, this is the perfect winter warmer that’ll leave you with a huge glow in your heart."

Tickets for Edinburgh Fringe First and Vault Festival Award winner Rowland's show are on sale at £12 on 01757 708449 or at or at £14 on the door from 7.30pm.

Charles Hutchinson