Welcome to the Fox and Hounds pub. This is a story of showbiz, the arts, and gender fluidity. It tells the story of a famous double-act, Grace and Alfie, or is it Zora?
For the first 20 minutes - and frequently throughout - I was at a loss. I struggled to put the different scenes together and felt confused by the series of character changes. There is Alfie, Grace, Zora, Katie as herself, Audrey the ghost and the stage manager. The ghost completely threw me as I could not find any function to her role within the play. Furthermore, there weren't enough distinct differences between each character apart from a change of clothes.
Undoubtedly a talented and authentic actor, Katie is genuine in her love of the arts and makes a good go of this show. She has good poise and control; while at the same time has the ability to express uninhibited and raw emotion. There are moments of strength, especially the witty psychoanalysis of Disney characters. Similarly, the definition between Barbie and Cindy dolls as a way to explain individual identity is very astute: Grace’s monologue in the last half of the play is particularly poignant and unfortunately the only real highlight.
There were moments of potential in Grace, these were not however enough to save the play. Each scene felt disjointed when it should have felt cohesive. A couple of scenes dragged on for too long resulting in the audience becoming fidgety and other scenes could have been cut out all together.
I think this play tried too hard to be abstract and original. Executed by a skilful actor, this one however was a little too off the mark for me.
Gilded Balloon Sportsman @ 13:45
For tickets and details visit: https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/grace-1