Graceless (4 stars)

This article is from 2009.


Five women’s stories collide

Issues of female empowerment, identity and the ability to teeter in impossibly high heels are worked through in this powerful show doused in symbolism and metaphor. Seeking to understand the female position in society, the play looks at how women think of themselves and how others see them, what clothes can say about identity, and deeper issues relating to why women have - and want - to procreate. It also questions the possibility of love and women’s relationships with men, both in terms of the individual and in a wider societal context.

The show’s first half focuses on individual women’s lives, while the second looks at how the pressures and expectations of society can shape and influence one’s behaviour. By turns shocking, profound and philosophical, and with capable performances from the five leading ladies, the show commands the audience’s attention from start to bittersweet finish. Certainly not just a show for ardent feminists, most people are sure to relate to the more general themes of life, love and the hoops we jump through to find our place in the world.

Assembly Hall, 623 3030, until 31 Aug (not 17, 24), 2.10pm, £10-£12 (£8-£10).


  • 4 stars

Five women's stories collide through quiet fury and ludicrous joy. Petticoats Rip, alongside associate director Jamie Wood ('Paperweight', Fringe First 2008), investigates the roles we squeeze into and hoops we jump through to totter in impossible heels.

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