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Home arrow Archive: Earlier Fringes arrow Archive: Edinburgh 2010
Girl Constantly F***ing Interrupted
Published on Thursday, 26 August 2010

5 stars

Gilded Balloon Teviot (venue website)
4-30 Aug, 12:00pm (1:00pm)
Reviewed by Catherine Meek

I was drawn to this play by the writer-actress herself: in true Fringe style, she was doing her own PR and approached a crowd of us at the bus stop. Her impassioned plea to hear her story caught my attention, and her dramatic performance proved to be no less bewitching – the small audience was transfixed throughout the hour. She was passionate, entertaining and brave, more than demonstrating her capability as both a writer and a performer. “Have I got what it takes?” she asked, the very last line of her show. Yes; most definitely.

The set is the attic of her late mother’s house, where Faith has escaped the often-insensitive questions of relatives and friends attending her mum’s funeral downstairs. The play is Faith’s story of her descent into despair and recovery later. It’s neither a rehearsal of the circumstances of her mother’s tragic murder, nor the subsequent inquiry into the Police’s handling of her case – but information about these is given in an article attached to her flyer. Notwithstanding the theme, the play itself is far from depressing; Faith / Celia is engaging and amusing, as well as very moving to watch.

An old suitcase of memorabilia – cards, diaries, shoes, trinkets – prompts Faith to relate her life story through the various objects she finds. Surprisingly, but also with great skill, Faith reveals the various voices in her head – voices which occur as personalities split off from her. Ange is the flirty frivolous one (perhaps reminiscent of her mother), Hope is the voice of the critic and Donna the motivator and nurturer of “the engine”, as she describes Faith, the one who gives life to them all. For the full hour Faith energetically entertained us with this series of characters, each discretely performed as she slipped cleverly and seamlessly from one to another – notwithstanding that they all had different accents – so that the conversation she was having with herself through the various voices expertly conveyed her unmistakeable inner conflict.

We learn of Faith’s drugs addiction, her emptiness, her journey to find herself as she comes to terms with a fear she has lost her roots.  Finally she sees that she does not need to find herself in objects or memories… in fact, she doesn’t need to find herself at all. Instead she can create herself and her life as she would wish them to be. Suicide attempts, personal torment and fear that her life is pointless give way to hope, a tentative appreciation of her own value, and anticipation of her potential success.

A sensitive and original view of despair, accessible to any audience, this is in my view a real contribution to the Fringe. I thoroughly recommend this thoughtful show and wish Celia every success.

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These are archived reviews of shows from the Edinburgh Fringe 2010.  We keep our archives online as a courtesy to those we've featured, and for readers who'd like to research previous years' reviews.

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