Review by Kim Bosch
40min | Comedy Drama | PG
Who am I and why? It’s a simple question, right? Riiiiight.
And yet, it’s a question that My Mother’s Daughter, in its short 40-minute duration, explores with eagerness. Told from the perspective of four very different women, the play gives an honest portrayal of each character’s past relationships with their own parents, comparing them to their present issues with men, addiction, vanity and weight.
Buoyed by a strong cast, My Mother’s Daughter is undoubtedly well-performed, with each monologue delivered with consideration and genuine reflection. That said, there is something cringingly familiar about this play. It plays it safe and gives the audience exactly what it would expect from its title: a com-dram about how our parents fuck us up and how we don’t know what to do about it. Which wouldn’t be so bad if there were more surprises, if the characters weren’t struggling with all-too predictable problems but instead came to interesting revelations or found new words/ways to freshly approach these common issues. Instead, it just feels like a play we’ve seen so many times before.
Furthermore, My Mother’s Daughter lacks a solid grounding in terms of setting (Are we in a coffee shop? A bar? Wait, now we’re in bedroom?) which abandons the characters rather than supporting them. There’s a blurriness here that leaves the audience ultimately confused and distracted. It IS successful, however, in employing humour to delicately ease the audience into painful issues of self-neglect, but that humour is not particularly original and therefore isn’t long-lasting. Although ambitious, My Mother’s Daughter lacks that edge you expect from a Fringe play.
My Mother’s Daughter is playing at Venue 1 – Arts Court Theatre (2 Daly Avenue, Elevator B) on Friday June 17 at 11pm, Sunday June 19 at 6pm, Tuesday June 21 at 9:30pm, Wednesday June 22 at 6:30 and Sunday June 26 at 2:30. Tickets are $10 each.