Red Stitch Theatre
20 June to 16 July
Red Stitch Theatre stages Clare Barron’s new play Shhh, creating a safe place to explore pain, pleasure, sisterhood, and consent leaving the audience with a visceral experience. With its six-member cast each character has their own story, their own agency while weaving them together through connecting threads, simultaneously showing the audience how lonely an event can be but also how we are not alone in kinship. Exploring the complexities of these stories of consent being ignored or received, the cast draws you in to each of their situations, leaving you with thought provoking questions.
Beginning the show in complete darkness, listening to an ASMR goddess take you through sound and relaxation, the director Emma Valente immediately creates freedom for the audience to feel and express their own reactions without the judgement of others around them. This genius move sets the tone for the rest of the show and allows us to feel more deeply to these themes and opens a conversation within ourselves without fear of judgement.
This visceral piece can take you from being angry at an injustice one minute to making you tear up from happiness over a field of flowers the next. Juggling the dynamics between each character, the actors do a phenomenal job portraying the complexities of non-consensual acts and how that trauma lives within us and our bodies. While dealing with heavy themes, this play has beautiful moments of light and expression and beautifully shows the juxtaposition of consent being ignored and consent being heard and received.
Shhh brings these themes to the forefront of society and starts a conversation with each audience member on how we might care for one another and to never stop trying, to have more freedom in allowing these conversations to happen.
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