Review: ★★ I Have A Mouth And I Will Scream, The Vault Festival

It would be nice to see a production about feminism which doesn’t involve badly overdrawn lipstick, throwing tampons around, boobs on display and making sex noises on the floor. Not because those things don’t tell us something, or because they’re bad things – but because they don’t tell us anything that we haven’t been told a hundred times before.

Feminism is still important. It is relevant and it is vital and it is being ignored in a lot of contexts – but this production breaks no new ground. It covers specifics which are covered not only in online circles but also by national and international news. It also fails to make clear whether they were mocking themselves or not – they easily could have been, but clarity would have been useful.

The actresses performed very well without exception, and with all the passion and anger you would expect in a production of this nature. There was not a weak link and they consistently acted, sang and moved well, with excellent comic timing. There was quite a lot of what seemed to be aimless running around, though – if it symbolised something, that needs to be made more explicit.

The Vaults is a wonderful venue, but this particular space is a problem for this production. There is a lot of what could only be described as rolling around on the floor, if you can’t actually see the floor – which is certainly the case for the back row of each of the three sides of the audience. There are also several moments where the actors are distinctly playing to the audience directly in front of them, making elements of the performance inaccessible to the other two thirds of the audience who are situated to each side of the ‘stage’. This doesn’t need to be, and shouldn’t be, a problem – but the production certainly needs to be aware of the space it is playing to, in order to overcome this obstacle.

I Have A Mouth And I Will Scream certainly has talent and potential behind it to become something bigger and better than it currently is – but it needs to be more original and adventurous in its content and delivery to achieve that.

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Emma Betty
Emma Betty

Emma Betty is 28 and a nurse in Birmingham Children’s Hospital’s Paediatric Intensive Care Unit. Emma has the Les Miserables 10th Anniversary Soundtrack (On CD!) to blame for her love for Musical Theatre, which she found in her parents living room pretty much as soon as she was old enough to know what it was. She began combining her love for Theatre, the Internet and Writing while she was still at school, through various blogs and on social media. Having moved to London in 2013, she launched Upper Circle 4 years later. A couple of years on, she is delighted to have a small team and is so grateful to those helping Upper Circle to grow every day!

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