Aug 28 2019 | By More

★★★★☆  Poignant

Young Critics Scheme review:
Roundabout @ Summerhall (Venue 26): Wed 31 July – Sun 25 Aug 2019
Review by Suzanne O’Brien

Daughterhood by Charley Miles for Paines Plough and Theatr Clwyd, is a fast paced piece, full of bitterness, jealousy and love, performed in the immersive environment of the Roundabout at Summerhall.

Stef O’Driscoll’s direction engages the audience right from the offset. Performed at pace in the round, with music filled blackouts for every scene change, the momentum created is sustained throughout.

Charlotte Bate and Charlotte OLeary. Pic: Rebecca Need Menear

The play explores the relationship between two sisters and the difficulties and responsibilities that come with growing up.

After their mother left when they were young, Pauline, played by Charlotte Bate, took on the role of “mum”. These responsibilities then led her to being the main carer for her father, allowing her sister Rachel, performed by Charlotte O’Leary, to have the freedom to experience life and attend further education.

With one sister left bitter that she is stuck at home and one blissfully unaware, the pair have a relationship filled with jealousy that many siblings can relate to.

Out-of-sync flashbacks slowly reveal how the sisters have got to this point. Each flashback highlights a crucial or pivotal point in their lives. Not everything is revealed all at once and the audience is constantly changing their opinion on the relationship, unable to decide who they feel sorry for.

O’Leary’s Rachel is full of energy and her positivity highlights how oblivious she is to how upset her sister is feeling. O’Leary creates a loveable character that lives up to her “little miss sunshine” nickname given to her by her father.

visually engaging

Pauline, however, couldn’t be more opposite to her sister. Bate’s portrayal lacks any sense of joy and her weak demeanour shows that all sense of life has been drained out of her. As a result of the monotonous days spent looking after her father, her life has come to a halt and the resentment she feels towards her sister grows.

The movement sections choreographed by Annie-Lunette Deakin-Foster are visually engaging and symbolic. At various points throughout the play the girls perform a mirror-like movement piece, symbolising the unseen ties that bind sister’s together.

Toyin Omari-Kinch takes on various supporting roles. They are somewhat over exaggerated versions of characters that are just needed in order to tell the story easily.

The piece is very entertaining and explores the bond sister’s have, whilst delving into the topics of family responsibilities and the effects that they have on relationships.

Running time: One hour (no interval)
Roundabout @ Summerhall, 1 Summerhall, EH9 1PL (Venue 26)
Wednesday 31 July – Sunday 25 August 2019
Daily: 2.15pm.
Tickets and details: https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/daughterhood

Website: www.painesplough.com/
Facebook: @painesploughHQ
Twitter: @painesplough
Instagram: @painesplough

Daughterhood on tour:
Thurs 5 – Sun 8 Sept Salford
Lowry Theatre
08432 086000 Book online
Thurs 12 – Sun 15 Sept Ramsgate
Newington Green
0844 871 3011 Book online
Thurs 19 – Sun 22 Sept Doncaster
Cast Theatre
01302 303 959 Book online
Thurs 26 – Sun 29 Sept Poole
0844 406 8666 Book online
Thurs 3 – Sun 6 Oct Lincoln
Lincoln Performing Arts Centre
01522 837600 Book online
Thurs 10 – Sat 26 Oct London
Theatre Royal Stratford East
020 8534 0310 Book online


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