‘Agatha’, at The Pleasance Theatre
Downstairs at The Pleasance Theatre is a small room with limited stage space. Down here, a compelling and larger than life story is being told, one that creates an air of intimacy between those telling it, and those watching it unfold.
The tale surrounds the complex relationship between three generations of women as they tackle the harsh decisions in life that they’ve had to make along, as well as how these decisions have repeated themselves.
It’s down to the granddaughter to break the cycle as she finds herself in a complicated place, whilst also uncovering some harsh truths about her mother and grandmother’s relationship in the process.
This production doesn’t shy away from exploring the 1960s approach towards women, especially surrounding the medical industry’s influence and control over their health. The actresses utilised the space flawlessly, and filled it with their natural charm and charisma. The character of Agatha, the grandmother, is an extravagant woman with big dreams and plans for the world that never reached their full potential.
It conveyed deeper feeling and expertly made the touching moments far more poignant.
During the events of the show she has since died, however her interaction with the audience added another layer and a new dynamic to the relationships at play. The spoken word, which was used to break up the dialogue in key places, tied everything together. It conveyed deeper feeling and expertly made the touching moments far more poignant.
The simplicity of the props and the stage made this show memorable; by whittling away any possible physical crutch we were left with no choice but to fully confront the hard-hitting themes it tackled. And that certainly left an impact.