Review – Self-Raising

This was a performance where you didn’t quite know what to expect and what an entertaining and different evening it turned out to be.

The wonderful thing about the Stephen Joseph Theatre is the huge variety of productions they always have on offer and it pays to be a little adventurous.

Jenny Sealey may be deaf but this isn’t used as a prop, merely part of her brilliant storytelling ability; she could read a phone book and make it entertaining!

The focus of her story broadly divides in two, the secrets families keep and how life can unexpectedly take a very different turn. It also highlights the changing attitudes to disability, childbirth and non-traditional relationships and asks whether family secrets should stay secret.

Jenny explains from the start that her journey from her original plan of adapting Anne Fine’s book, Flour Babies, to the show it became was the result of life getting in the way and the audience are the ones to benefit from this.

Jenny is the artistic director of disabled-led theatre company Graeae and has taken a change of direction to become performer and co-writer, with Mike Kenny, taking her first step into writing.

The direction, by Lee Lyford, whilst very simple, works brilliantly with a very simple set working hard to assist in telling the sometimes shocking story.

You will leave the auditorium talking about the issues raised.

At the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Wednesday February 21st.