HAS there ever been a more beautiful, lilting sound to permeate the young human ear? No, we’re not talking of the song of the lark, but the chimes of the ice cream van.

Those happy, electronic notes heralded the arrival of the brightly coloured van, a travelling emporium containing delights designed to entrance: the soft cream of a Mr Whippy cone; the wondrous combination of ice cream, flaky chocolate and the tingle of raspberry sauce.

And now, the ice cream van forms the backdrop to a new stage play, Sean and Daro Flake It ‘Til They Make It.

Playwright Laurie Motherwell’s premise is not, however, a world of drug-selling and gangsters, which were synonymous with ice cream vans in the 1970s.

It’s the story of two best friends who work together in an ice-cream van – a confined space from which there is no escape, but is a place of dreams, nonetheless.

And as such, the dramatic potential is powerful.

“It’s like the two mates down the pub who think it would be a great idea to take ownership of said pub,” explains Motherwell. “It’s mixing work with pleasure and enjoying it a wee bit.”

The writer adds: “I wondered what it would be like to run an ice cream van. I’d never be brave enough to do it myself so, it made sense for two imaginary pals to do it instead.

“That has been generally a theme in my work – the nature of friendships and their roles in our lives. Particularly the friendships we lose along our way.”

Des Dillon’s I’m No’ a Billy – He’s a Tim used a jail cell as the platform to force true exchange. Stephen Greenhorn’s Passing Places offered similar scope and energy. “Because they’re in the van, it’s the opportunity to visit places, which Passing Places does,” says Motherwell of his play.

Sean and Daro, we discover, may be best friends but they are very different young men. Sean is a university drop-out who teams up with his streetwise friend Daro for a money-making scheme selling ice cream.

Motherwell, a graduate of the University of Edinburgh’s MSc in playwriting, is all too aware that simply going off to university doesn’t set someone up for life. “For a working-class guy, if you’re seen to have any form of academic attainment, that’s your journey.

“Sean’s not got much of a choice. You get sat down and told to go to university.

Sean is asking, ‘And then what?’ It’s not like prospects are infinitely better for having attended university. There are a lot of people struggling who have degrees and a huge amount of debt.”

The play considers the options available to young people these days. “The capitalist dream is sold to self-starters when there’s quite a lot set against them to not succeed because of the background they’re from,” says Motherwell.

“What is the relationship between The Apprentice and young people? Or cult figures like Elon Musk and all these charismatic capitalists – how do they affect these characters and the way they envisage success?”

He adds: “They are young guys on different paths who have been brought back together to do this. I definitely see myself as a Sean, but he kind of wishes he had the freedom of his best mate Daro, who encapsulates a sense of morality that Sean feels he has lost. They’re essentially two good guys – I wouldn’t say there’s a villain here.”

However, the dark comedy doesn’t rely upon dark characters to instil dramatic tension. At its core is a story of two young men brought together in the van by circumstances.

And their time among the chocolate bars, soft drink cans and crisp packets offers them the chance to tear open their own thoughts.

How far can they go with this ice cream van plan? More importantly, how far can this friendship go?

Sean are Daro are played by River City actors Sean Connor and Cameron Fulton, both Glaswegians perfectly placed to play friends who can laugh together and “carry the rhythm of the piece”.

Sean And Daro Flake It ‘Til They Make It, Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh, April 14-23