The Road to Skibbereen
Edinburgh Festivals

Edinburgh Festival Fringe Scotsman review (theatre): The Road to Skibbereen at C (Venue 34). Reviewed by Sally Stott.

Lianna is a regular stroppy teenager who falls out with her Mum, keeps her room in a mess and enjoys listening to Robbie Williams. She also has learning difficulties. Meanwhile, her Mum has early-onset dementia.

Like one of those authentic one-hour domestic dramas the BBC no longer really makes, Angela Walsh’s semi-autobiographical play follows the two’s relationship and the shift of power between them, as cared for becomes carer. It’s a well-observed, heartfelt piece.

With a terrific performance from Jessica Corcoran as Lianna – capturing all of the teenage angst and turmoil that any child would feel in such a situation – it’s also about trying to fit in when any kind of difference is something that’s picked up on by bullies, whether they’re at school or they’re older men out on the street.

Shifting between Lianna’s relationship with her mother and a boy she meets at her drama group, who’s obsessed with Doctor Who, it could do with a story that develops more, through which the characters could be explored in greater depth. They’re well set up, but it feels like we’re just getting to know about them before Lianna’s mum (played by Walsh) is leaving forever.

The Road to Skibbereen is at C.

Originally published in The Scotsman

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