When I Grow Up (3 stars)

Heartfelt piece of comedic theatre with plenty of chuckles along the way


This article is from 2013.

When I Grow Up

Juliette Burton asks the question of how our chosen professions contribute to our identities in this one-woman show about her not-always-successful career aspirations. Taking us back to her childhood with an aura of Crayola whimsy she walks us through her early intentions to become a ballerina, princess, muppet and other similarly well-laid plans, which work in counterpoint to her grimmer struggles later in life.

Supplementing her monologue is a multimedia chorus of talking heads riffing on the subject of jobs as well as charming illustrations and comedic sequences starring Burton, which display her remarkable fearlessness in pursuit of a punchline. These interludes allow for some of the funniest moments and contribute to a well-structured hour.

The framework allows Burton to travel through some serious issues with real feeling and, by balancing autobiography, gentle comedy and the social talking point of careers, achieves a powerful emotional pay-off. A warm and highly engaging performer, Burton gets the job done, with the result being less of an outright hilarity-fest and more a heartfelt piece of theatre with plenty of chuckles along the way.

Gilded Balloon Teviot, 622 6552, until 26 Aug (not 13), 1.15pm, £8–£9 (£7–£8).

This article is from 2013.

When I Grow Up

  • 3 stars

Mace and Burton. Does growing up mean letting go? As a child Juliette wanted to be many things: ballerina, princess, Muppet. Was she right as a kid? Did she know her vocation before life got in the way? In this true-life comedy, Juliette Burton (of award-winning duo Mace and Burton) realises childhood ambitions.


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