Before the Adelaide Fringe festival even kicked off in a bigger and better way this year, I was fortunate to scored some tickets to the preview screening of what has quickly become one of my favourite shows of the Fringe season thus far.
A one-woman monologue musical with a humorous spin on it, Claire Dawson is a woman from Liverpool who has brought her show ‘A Woman On The Edge’ to Adelaide and share with us her voice, her life experiences, and her journey towards self-discovery after suffering a mid-life crisis.
Claire plays a character named “Sisi” who is the epitome of the vital milestones throughout Claire’s life in Liverpool. Providing a great balance of soulful, heartfelt, and humorous, this play is bound to leave you feeling a range of emotions. Often times than most, you will find yourself in moments of uncontrollable laughter. And during other acts of the play, you will wonder how could a person so accurately represent our everyday worries so eloquently through the medium of music.
Not normally a huge fan of musicals, I fell in love with Claire’s performance within 5 minutes of hearing her sing – it is a voice that can leave you in a trance. She hit the high notes as perfectly as she toned down her voice to bring out the passion, the frustration, the anguish, and the sense of failure that she felt through her relationship with this awful man named Joe, her being raised by parents who pushed her over the limit at the worst of times, and the treatment she received from her teacher at school.
This play aims to be as interactive and engaging, so no matter where you’re seated, you might be one of the lucky ducks who gets to share a romantic, fun-filled dance segment. She’s very encouraging, so don’t be shy!
Claire has a knack to provide us with a performance that showcases a raw and real performance, which is enhanced through the use of melodic tunes to “give my story to the audience”. Quirky and memorable one-liners were common throughout the show – this was one of my favourites (and I wish this was how life would reward me, when I went through a tough time):
“I’ve been on so many blind dates, I should’ve won a free Labrador!”
While we do not get a point-by-point story of Claire’s entire life, pivotal aspects are covered through the use of clever costumes, well-planned choreography with her hologram backup singers, and a very real performance based on something… real. Something… meaningful.
Together with writer and director Rod Anderson, Claire Dawson has unleashed the ability to captivate the audience through the interweaving of two uncommon yet craftily matched themes of entertainment. Claire’s show ‘A Woman On The Edge’ will have 12 total shows, which will be available for viewing at the German Club in the Adelaide CBD and the Salisbury Secret Garden at Salisbury Institute.
– Details –
Dates: FEB 22 – MARCH 5
Venue: Studio at The GC at The German Club
223 Flinders Street, Adelaide
Price range: $19 – $29