clever, witty, self-referential and unique
The Unspoken Word is ‘Joe’ | Review
Kathleen Spaull | Australian Stage
5 Oct, 2012
The Unspoken Word is “Joe“ is clever, witty, self-referential and unique. It’s modern theatre made by the young, the ambitious, and sometimes anxious. MKA are new and they have been making noise since their arrival on the scene two years ago. Writer Zoey Dawson proves herself as refreshingly and embarrassingly honest, embarrassing because I feel I was not the only one in the audience who was relating to the heart tugging and lump-in-the-throat awkwardness the narrative delivers. It’s Meta-theatrical and ironic but without the pretension that so often is ascribed to those terms.
…Have I made you want to see it? Well if I haven’t, you should. Not only is this piece very, very clever theatre, it’s hilarious! The writing is funny, poignant, reflective and hones in so precisely and poetically on emotion. Embarrassment, love, remorse, pride… But clever writing cannot stand alone and what drives this work is the exceptional performances. It has been a long time since I have been moved, truly moved, by a performer and Nikki Shiels never missed a beat. She was the beat, she was the absolute embodiment of all those afore-mentioned attributes of Woman 1/Zoey Dawson. (Not to be confused with the writer Zoey Dawson who caricature’s herself.) Her performance was so precise and nuanced that at times you wanted to be her best friend, at others you wanted to slap her ridiculously attractive face for being so immature. The girl and her supporting cast had perfectly timed when to shine and when to simply raise an eyebrow.
There is so much I have left unspoken in this review, as I don’t want to spoil the surprise. The Unspoken Word is “Joe” is not to be missed this Fringe.