Edinburgh Festival Fringe theatre review: Teaset, reviewed by The Scotsman’s David Pollock
It’s worth making clear early on that this solo monologue from writer Gina Moxley sees actor Amy Molloy deliver what must sit amongst the top rank of performances to be seen on the Fringe this year.
Seated at a table throughout, she’s naturalistic and intense as she relates the story of the old lady in her native Ireland whom her character befriends around Christmas 1999, and about that lady’s need for company, understanding and, as it transpires, protection. Using the recurring motif of an heirloom tea set to make physical the careworn fragility of old age, our narrator reveals an unfolding tale of violence, fear and ultimately revenge.
The piece makes plain in stark terms how we mustn’t forget the elderly and vulnerable, although in the harsh and uncompromising nature of that message’s delivery there are echoes of Linda McLean’s Any Given Day, a joltingly controversial work. Here, Moxley (a fringe First winner for Lippy last year and the director of this year’s How to Keep an Alien) and director Sharon Willems freight the same ugliness in a more measured manner.
There’s something of the sense that a shorter monologue has been drawn out to Fringe show length, but Molloy’s performance is captivating enough to keep her audience compelled to move deeper into the depths together.
Pleasance Courtyard (Venue 33), until 31 August, 2pm.
Published in The Scotsman on 29 August 2015
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