Monday, 11 August 2008

The Stage Review

There's Something In The Fridge That Wants to Kill Me
Dinner For One
to Sunday August 24, 2008

Self-hatred is rarely the most diverting of subjects, but in this one-woman show, Isabelle Gregson manages to win us over to her dark side. A multi-linguist, Gregson peoples the stage with the various aspects of her personality, who become distinct characters. She has within her, she claims, civilised French mademoiselle, a sexual Spaniard, a diplomatic Brit, a vicious body critic and a monstrous glutton. These multiple personalities have been gathered along the way, the result of growing up as a plump child in France with a highly critical Spanish mother, of living in the States for university, and residing in Britain for years. The issue of fat permeates the piece, as Gregson battles with perceived food addictions and identity crises.

It does sound unprepossessing – eating disorders, self-analysis, multiple personalities – but the script and performance make it surprisingly funny and Gregson's witty tone proves charismatic. The set is well designed, with black and white cartoon cut-outs depicting the mirror and fridge, while the staging is elegant with clean lines. A former peep-show dancer, Gregson is graceful with a clear singing voice. This, combined with Simon Bass' original music, makes the title song the stand-out piece of the production. There is also a bold banana dance, which is not as vocally strong but is very amusing.
Gregson's slim figure illustrates how much of women's obsession with their bodies is truly mad, but in this instance the madness is entertaining to behold

Maria Hodson
Published online on Monday 11 August 2008

No comments: