Pickle Jar, Soho Theatre

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by an anonymous guest critic

A masterclass in one-woman storytelling, Pickle Jar is delicately told in the intimate setting upstairs in Soho Theatre. Staged on a minimalist set with potted plants in various locations, the setting gives little away of what the journey is we are about to experience. This places more pressure on the performer to create the world for us, but she certainly delivers.

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Drip Feed, Soho Theatre

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by Maeve Campbell

Karen Cogan begins her one-woman show floppy and lifeless looking, slumped over a grubby sofa bed. This is an uncomfortable image to pre-show chat in front of and it sets the mood for the proceeding work. Drip Feed is Brenda’s story, a ‘youngish’ queer woman living in Cork, inhabited by insular, parochial and judgemental residents. Brenda, though, is ‘part of the furniture’ of the city, but seems both in love with and restricted by it.

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Fabric, Soho Theatre

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by Laura Kressly

Leah loves life. She works in a Saville Row shop and shares a flat with her best mate. It gets even better when she meets Ben Cavendish, a new customer at work, and things starts turning into a real-life fairytale. But real life isn’t a fairytale – awful things happen and endings aren’t always happily ever after.

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The Political History of Smack and Crack, Soho Theatre

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by Laura Kressly

Mandy and Neil have known each other since they were kids. They grew up in Manchester’s Moss Side in the 80s and 90s, watching the streets burn in the riots then be flooded by drug dealers hawking heroin. There’s hardly been a time where drugs weren’t a part of their lives.

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With Child, Soho Theatre

by guest critic Maeve Campbell

Clare Pointing’s With Child isn’t actually about pregnancy. Facing a show that’s billed as six ‘talking heads’ style monologues delivered by six pregnant characters feels dauntingly alienating when you only know or care a little about trimesters or nursing plans. But thankfully, none of these themes are focused too heavily upon in Pointing’s perceptive, nuanced one woman show.

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Flesh and Bone, Soho Theatre

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by guest critic Amy Toledano

This tour-de-force of a show is a love letter to the last of the East End geezers and birds alike who, just like everybody else, want to live their lives the way they please, free from societal pressure and judgement. Written, directed and performed by the brilliant Elliot Warren and Olivia Brady, the story has been brought to life through many a real life experience, as they detail the grit, violence and love they dish out and take in everyday.

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Flutter, Soho Theatre

by guest critic Maeve Campbell

Heading home from the Soho Theatre after watching Justin Hopper’s Flutter, it was striking to see crowds of people, mainly men, congregate outside the huge Hippodrome Casino that faces Leicester Square station. The detailed interior of the Grosvenor betting shop, immaculately imagined in the Soho upstairs space, had impressed, but felt rather distant from the location of the playing space. Now facing these worshippers to the church of gambling, it seems such snobberies were ignorantly informed. The play’s press describes it as “a love-letter to the high street bookies”. This love is a dark one though, rapidly told in this hour and a half melodrama.

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The End of History, St Giles in the Field

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Paul (Chris Polick) is a London property developer. He’s a smooth talker and wears impeccably cut, expensive looking suits. He goes to exclusive chillouts where he takes pills and fucks men he doesn’t know. He’s waiting for the clinic to phone.

Wendy’s (Sarah Malin) an art therapist for a few different charities. She’s a liberal activist, and works with homeless people when budgets allow. She and her boyfriend Dave have just split up so moved out and has no where to go. With luggage in tow and work in the morning, she’s reached the end of the line.

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