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Review: dressed.(Pleasance Courtyard)

Updated: Sep 20, 2019

Four young women hop, skip and dance across the stage. They’re old school friends, and it shows. Their connection on stage is unbelievable: sincere, caring and quirky, something only true strong friends can reflect to a room full of strangers. Their love for each other comes naturally and it’s beautiful to watch.

Years ago Lydia was undressed. Stripped against her will and left vulnerable to a group of men. She howls her pain like a wolf in the moonlight, and slowly learns how to get dressed again. She begins to sew her own clothes to cope with the trauma. She sews her friends’ costumes, costumes for a show that doesn’t even exist at the time. Only it does now, and we’re watching it. They’re by her side, wearing the costumes, and have made this show all for her. A way for her to share her story, so that others can feel a little less alone in this scary world.

This isn’t the collectives first time at the Fringe, only last year they won a Fringe First for

dressed. and now they return this year as a part of the British Council Showcase. Their quick success isn’t surprising, as they perfectly explore and execute such a tender and personal subject, through the use of dance, singing and sewing. Nobahar’s singing is angelic, with her soft words pulling on your heart strings, as you empathise over Lydia’s experience. The use of the sewing machine immerses us in Lydia’s world, as she sews and moves to the rhythm of the machine; you can see how much this

means to her.

Occasionally slow and messy transitions let the piece down, amongst this otherwise well devised and experimental piece. Their nod to last year’s reviews give it an interesting perspective. They dedicate a tap dance routine to Harvey Weinstein, taking us back to the heart of the #MeToo movement, something that shadowed over the play in its initial run. Post #MeToo and the play is still as relevant today as it should be any day, and these strong women don’t need a movement to express their feelings on the matter.

Catch the strong female ensemble, ThisEgg, with dressed. in the Pleasance Courtyard – Fourth at 12:10, until the 25th August. Tickets are available here:

Take a look at Lydia’s intricate sewing creations here:

Review by Amy Mawer

Photo by Lidia Crisafulli

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