Words Words Words, VAULT Festival

Image result for words words words, vault festival, lowri amies

by guest critic Alex Dowding

Grief is a funny and very human experience, and we all inevitably go through it in one way or another. Writer and performer Lowri Amies here examines her grief around the death of loved ones by diving headfirst into another love – that of Shakespeare.

It’s an interesting idea and not an uncommon one – how often do we find solace in the words of others? In songs, poetry and theatre, we exorcise our emotions through the relatable experience of others.

Presented here as a one-woman show with minimal staging, it’s often difficult to latch onto but not without merit. Amies is clearly a talented wordsmith, and confessing that her favourite text is As You Like It allows for some dexterous juxtapositions. Most notably she intertwines the “All The World’s a Stage” speech and it’s seven ages into the seven stages of grief that she’s experiencing and even into the set (which makes for a lovely, tied-up ending that I won’t spoil here).

The way she finds and inserts quotes from various Shakespeare plays to appropriately and poetically fit the story throughout is clever, but I often find I drift out of the storytelling to instead remembering where the text was from. This isn’t helped by some of the characters she inhabits seeming under-energised. It may be a measured choice considering the topic of grief, but it feels stagnant. It’s a shame, as the story is obviously very personal to her and with a bit more energy injected into lifting the Shakespearean text it could hold the audience more consistently and carry us through her seven stages.

Overall it’s an accomplished piece of writing about a very personal subject but it wants more. With more time or some fresh eyes on it, this piece could really fly.

Words Words Words runs through 4 March.

The Play’s the Thing UK is committed to covering fringe and progressive theatre in London and beyond. It is run entirely voluntarily and needs regular support to ensure its survival. For more information and to help The Play’s the Thing UK provide coverage of the theatre that needs reviews the most, visit its patreon.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s