Entertainment Hive 2017

Scorch

Holden Street Theatres, The Studio until March 19

Review by Honey B

On the web you can be anyone you want to be. For teenager Kes (played by Amy McAllister) it’s a place she can be herself and be true to herself. In real life, Kes is a young girl who is gender-curious and confused about how to navigate through her feelings and the world. She summed up her feelings when she says she didn’t fancy Ryan Gosling – she wanted to be Ryan Gosling. When Kes meets Jules online while playing video games she doesn’t correct Jules when she believes Kes is a boy. The pair begin a relationship which is more complicated than either realise. McAllister was riveting as the as the naive, socially awkward teen with an endearing, open personality and a desire to find her place in the world. From the outset as she twitched her seat to the music and her frenetic, convulsive style dance moves highlighted her growing confusion and created a sense of anxiety. It was a very physical performance. Playwright Stacey Gregg has crafted a mesmerising, topical work delving into the issue of gender fraud. Complicated issues surrounding fraud and deceit are examined through the eyes of a young girl who fell in love but didn’t understand the consequences or the law. It was an all too human story – which was inspired by a high-profile case. An intelligent, brilliantly acted, sensitively produced piece of essential theatre. Do not miss it.
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