Shame (4 stars)

This article is from 2017


Tidy Carnage's powerful, knotty drama focuses on 'slut-shaming'

Writer / performer Belle Jones' new production is double pronged: a warm, loving look at a mother's unconditional love and a chilling dip into online misogyny. When Vicky Chisholm (Jones) a single mother, discovers from a teacher that her 15- year-old daughter Keira (Sarah Miele) has been filmed drunkenly having sex with two boys from her class, and that the video has gone viral, she is both fearful and apoplectic. But now, Keira has gone missing and nobody knows where she is.

What follows is a touching and defiantly unsentimental look at the lengths family members will go to just to ensure their relatives are kept safe, and a multi-layered study in the innate tendency for people to jump on online bandwagons, for good or ill. The double standard of girls as 'sluts' and boys as 'players' is explored, yet the play is never heavy-handed in its execution and Tim Reid's superb video work ramps up the tension.

Jones' performance is delicate and nuanced, depicting a caring, flawed woman who had Keira at 15, and is more aware than most that the mud of stigmatisation can scrub off, eventually. She is more than matched by Miele as kind, slightly naive Keira, wobbling faunlike on heels towards an uncertain adulthood. A humane, beautiful piece of work.

Assembly George Square Studios, until 28 Aug, 4.15pm, £9–£11.


  • 4 stars

Mixed media theatre about the concept of shame.