A Spectacle of Herself

In A Spectacle Of Herself Laura Murphy slides the serious and the silly up against each other as she successfully weaves the philosophical, the personal and the political together into the mess they truly are.

Slides the serious and the silly up against each other

Murphy is a charismatic performer drawing from clowning, parody, the world of Drag Kings, alongside aerial work and academic meditations of feminism, queerness, mental health, identity and neurodivergence. Whilst adding a sprinkling of horninesss levels matched by Fleabag, with a righteous celebration of the word cunt, echoing The Vagina Monologues.

The sections of aerial work are moments of true transcendence. These are captivating and charming, providing flashes of queer euphoria breaking through the backdrop of panic attacks, overstimulation and righteous rage against the world we live in.

Murphy has no time for people perceived as famous smart men, either in history or today featuring her parodies of Einstein and cunting Elon cunting Musk. Musk being particularly wince inducing. Providing an alternative to Musk’s idea of space, a space shaped inescapably by capitalism, masculinity and the patriarchy. Murphy provides a reclaimed erotic love for space, performed with tenderness.

The pacing of the piece is sadly a bit sporadic, at points I felt like I was waiting for a song to end rather than still enjoying the joke. To avoid spoilers I shall be vague but there was a point in the piece that rushed us towards a precipice and I was craving the jump and destruction and I felt I didn’t get it. This piece had the longest wait on a joke, for payoff that I have seen in a while and it was fantastic.

The performance has been carefully crafted, and the work to provide AV and captioning for almost all of Murphy’s speech should be commended. It is a serious leap for general accessibility.

Despite the academic trappings the piece's real clarion call is for us to get out of our anxious, rage-filled, heads for a bit and just be a body, to rave - despite the world around us.

Visit Show Website

Reviews by M Johnson

Assembly George Square Studios

The Maids

★★★
Zoo Southside

Funeral

★★★
Summerhall

An Interrogation

★★★
theSpace @ Niddry St

And Then The Rodeo Burned Down

★★★★★
Zoo Southside

Report to an Academy

★★
Pleasance Courtyard

Lucy and Friends

★★★★

Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now

Performances

Location

The Blurb

Join Laura on a mission to serve herself up (in)appropriately for your consumption, in a bold, cinematic, acrobatic odyssey through the frontiers of mental health, queerness, rage and the 21st Century space race. Directed by Ursula Martinez, with Laura’s critical and cheeky signature mix of autobiography, lip-sync, video and aerial rope, A Spectacle of Herself navigates the personal and political, to seek out new worlds and ways to be seen. Summerhall Mary Dick Award Winner 2023. ‘Blistering’ **** (Fest). ’A complex new form of solo-theatre’ (Scotsman). ‘Murphy’s ability as a circus performer is mesmerising' **** (TheWeeReview.com).

Most Popular See More

Back to the Future - The Musical

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Tina - The Tina Turner Musical

From £12.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Play That Goes Wrong

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Book of Mormon

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Frozen the Musical

From £36.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Mamma Mia!

From £21.00

More Info

Find Tickets