Bit of Sunshine (3 stars)

The destructive power of bulimia is bought into the light

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Bit of Sunshine

Bloody Deeds, the company behind Bit of Sunshine, were founded to promote women in theatre, recognising that it could be a male dominated art. Bit of Sunshine is a new play, performed by writer Nicole Zweiback, that grapples with the horror of bulimia, as experienced by one talented young woman.

Although the early episodes tend to incoherence, as Zweiback settles into her description of a life tormented by a dream of weight-loss, the script gains power as it focuses on a woman's experience of the regime for cure. Trying to argue against the treatment of the patients in the rehabilitation centre, bulimics are identified as a cultural group, oppressed in the same way as Jews by Nazis. The hysteria of the patient, and her binge and purge fantasies, are presented with a mixture of repulsion and celebration.

The message of the show, however, is clear: bulimia kills. The final moments are a down-tempo counterpoint to the frantic energy, and Zweiback offers a powerful, dynamic performance that combines compassion with a sense of the devastation that this illness brings.

theSpace on the Mile, until 27 Aug, 6.05pm, £8 (£6.50).

Bit of Sunshine

  • 3 stars

"…I don't even know what reality tastes like anymore." Kira is the perfect teenager. Kira wants to go to Oxford. But her eating disorder shatters everything in her path. In this poignant, raw and honest new play a young girl explores what it's like growing up with mental illness and the lifelong struggle of addiction.

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