Sam Tutty became one of the youngest Olivier Award winners when he scooped best actor in a musical for West End hit Dear Evan Hansen.

Still just 25, his latest role finds him in a more intimate space, in a new musical comedy, with just two performers and a four-strong band.

In Two Strangers (Carry a Cake Across New York) at Kiln Theatre, he plays naive, impossibly upbeat Brit Dougal, who flies into the big apple for his father's second wedding.

Ham & High: Sam Tutty plays naive upbeat Brit Dougal attending his estranged father's New York wedding in Two StrangersSam Tutty plays naive upbeat Brit Dougal attending his estranged father's New York wedding in Two Strangers (Image: Marc Brenner)

He's collected by the bride's streetwise, cynical sister Robin (Dujonna Gift) who is late for work and impatient with Dougal's puppyish desire to see the sights. But with extravagant nuptials approaching, transporting the wedding cake becomes a catalyst for a transformative transatlantic relationship, which unfolds over 36 hours in Jim Barne and Kit Buchan's show.

"There's a very simple vibe and a really beautiful tempo to this," says Tutty. 

"What pulled me in when I fist read the script are these wonderful seamless scenes with these honest characters and very human relationship.

"Dougal is impossibly excited, he has a cliched, tourist idea of New York City, and a childlike wonder that drives Robin up the wall. Their first conversation is about Marmite, they are the opposite end of each other's spectrums, she is a realist, he is an optimist. But as the show goes on they pull the veil from each other's eyes, see each other for who they are - and look through each other to see themselves."Ham & High: Dujonna Gift plays cynical New Yorker Robin in the two hander at Kiln TheatreDujonna Gift plays cynical New Yorker Robin in the two hander at Kiln Theatre (Image: Marc Brenner)

The original score ranges from pop songs to ballads with "wonderfully written harmonies," that offer still moments amid the noise and chaos of the city.

It's a heartfelt show exploring familial, platonic and unrequited love - Dougal is dealing with an estranged father but Robin confesses unsatisfactory relationships of her own, and has some bridges to rebuild.

"Sometimes it takes a stranger to offer you a reset. He offers her hope that it's not too late to fix things, but it's reciprocal."

After training for three years at Italia Conti drama school, Tutty left in 2019 and was planning to work at Top Man while attending auditions when "Evan Hansen picked me up off the streets."

Penned by the team behind The Greatest Showman and La La Land, the show about a bullied high school teen with social anxiety, who invents an unearned role for himself in a fellow student's suicide, was already a hit on Broadway.

Landing the lead in the West End production involved 13 auditions including three in New York: "Evan Hansen was incredibly important for a lot of people, a real flagship of mental health. It was a remarkable show and I was very proud to have been part of it," says Tutty, who will be imaginatively - at least - back in New York this month.

"Once again I'm on stage all the time, trust me to choose another equally challenging role."

Two Strangers runs at Kiln Theatre, Kilburn from November 9 until December 23.