I don’t want to give away too much of the plot of the show (however there may be slight spoilers), I went in knowing absolutely nothing about it, I just had other people’s recommendations, I didn’t know the story at all. I think this made it even more breathtaking, as I didn’t know what to expect.
The set was very minimalistic and additional props slid on from the sides of the stage. The direction of the play was very cleverly done, the show was not performed to the audience, but performed as if you are an onlooker, being able to watch the story pan out from the sidelines.
Denise Gough’s acting was absolutely mind blowing, the emotion she portrays throughout the entire show was mesmerising. She has invested 100% (if not more) into this show and at no point, considering she barely leaves the stage from curtain up to curtain call, did her acting falter, she grips you into her character from the very beginning and you stay engrossed for the entire time. You spend a lot of the show trying to pick out the truth from the fiction watching a seemingly angry woman progress and open up to show an incredibly vulnerable and broken young girl. You are taken on an emotional roller coaster that is so beautifully played out you find yourself shocked and angry one minute, laughing the next and then in floods of tears, genuinely wanting to reach out and help her. The closing scenes are incredibly heart-wrenching, as the whole story comes together and you begin to truly understand what you have just witnessed. Gough proved she was worthy of ever single inch of her Olivier award and I only wish there were a thousand more awards she could be given for this role, as I’m just not sure that one completely shows exactly how incredible she is.
The entire cast were extremely strong, particular mentions to Barbara Marten and Nathaniel Martello-White. Barbara plays several main characters throughout the show and portrays them all to show a distinct difference, yet equally showing a similar theme throughout. Nathaniel’s character goes through some big changes throughout the show as an almost secondary character, yet at times, you feel yourself becoming as engrossed in his story as the main character.
So I urge every single one of you to go and beg, borrow or steal a ticket to this show and embrace every single moment of this stunning master-class in acting!