Glitter Punch (4 stars)

This article is from 2017

Glitter Punch

Classic coming-of-age story told through the diaries of a 16-year-old girl

Molly is a working class girl from Salford. She's just started college and is the first of her family to attend. There she meets a Londoner named John and they begin an intense relationship. Like all good coming-of-age stories, Molly learns much about love, sex and loss all through the lens of her newly awakened passions.

This story is frequently sweet, but never saccharine. Molly's descriptions of what it feels like to fall in love are imaginative and extreme, but always understandable. The title of the play is taken from one of her many metaphors for love, that it feels like a nice punch. A glitter punch.

The comparison is apt. While the sensation may be pleasant and the glitter colourful, a punch is still a violent act. This becomes increasingly relevant as the play heads towards a dark and ambiguous conclusion.

One of the refrains of Molly's diary is 'I'm shit with words' when she evidently isn't. Her writing is filled with wonder and imagination, yet she is completely devoid of confidence in herself. Even with John, the love of her life, she is more eloquent in her private diaries than she is in person. That John is an upper middle-class Londoner serves to highlight the insidious nature of Molly's working-class anxiety.

There is no traditional happily ever after. Molly ends the story as neither victim nor winner. But having drawn us into her life, with wit and passion, there is hope that she can find happiness for herself.

Assembly George Square Studios, until 28 Aug, 1.15 pm, £10–£12.

Glitter Punch

  • 4 stars

★★★★ 'Something extraordinary' – From The Box Office ★★★★ 'A beautiful piece of new writing' – ActDrop ★★★★ 'A superb piece of theatre' – London Theatre 1 ★★★★ 'A very moving story' – London Pub Theatres ★★★★ 'A spot-on recreation of what first love can be' – Fringe Review Fresh from a critically acclaimed run at London's…