Izzy Mant: Polite Club
- Suzanne Black
- 4 August 2019
This article is from 2019
Engaging, intelligent confessional on politeness and manners
Sipping tea from a china cup, wearing a neatly tailored dress and welcoming everyone into the room, Izzy Mant takes her over-politeness to task for an hour of personal anecdotes, video clips and a few props. Drawing upon her day job working with actors, some defining childhood and parental moments and, mostly, her back catalogue of boyfriends, Mant crafts a solid and considered show with her focus on politeness providing a really nice through line.
She makes the most of her background working in the, well, background, of theatre directing and TV producing to pull together a slick hour. The scripting, pacing and video segments all cohere into a well thought out whole that maintains a high level of laughter.
The political implications of politeness, such as its role in Britain's imperial self-image as a civilising force and the relationship between gender roles and being polite, are skimmed over where engaging with them could have given the show more depth. But it would be impolite not to praise Mant for everything she does very well, offering up an engaging, intelligent and at times unflinchingly honest confession of why her good manners are sometimes a bad thing.
Underbelly Bristo Square, until 26 Aug (not 12), 2.50pm, £10–£11 (£9–£10).