Appropriate by Sarah-Jane Scott

This one person play, written and performed by Sarah-Jane Scott, introduces us to Sorcha who is fresh from fleeing her wedding. Over the next hour, Scott delivers a sophisticated exploration of how getting exactly what we want, can make us question everything we ever believed in. There are nuances a-plenty, as ‘Appropriate’ delves into compelling observations on ways women low key manipulate men to achieve societal validation; of reality vs expectation; ‘instalife’ and the truth behind the domestic bliss that people wear like a mask to hide from the realities bubbling beneath the surface.

An intriguing and thought provoking narration of one woman’s foray into wedded bliss.

Scott has cleverly created this narrative which gives space for Sorcha to reflect back on what exactly has led her to escaping the day she’d planned with military precision. She recalls her quest to gain the heart of ‘Marty,’ her rugby pro fiance; the deathbed reassurances she gave her father regarding her future happiness; and the dynamic interplay between Sorcha and the various women in her life - the competition, the denial and the pressure of the ‘quest’. Despite the serious issues being discussed, there's comic interludes aplenty which lighten the mood - 'Sweet Valley High sex'; withheld chip shop vinegar and clumpfuls of hair extensions are all relatable moments for the audience.

As Sorcha considers elements of her life leading up to her wedding day, her assurances and commitment to this life ahead of her begin to unravel. The audience are given hints that all is not well - like the anxiety which has plagued her since the moment she accepted the marriage proposal which she herself engineered. She envies her fiance and his ‘ability to be so sure’, to be so serene and happy, everything society’s told her she should also be in this moment. However the red flags continue to stack up, small distractions that become flashing beacons as she remembers her infidelity on her honeymoon and how easy it was to turn her back on everything she thought she’d always wanted.

Sarah-Jayne Scott has delivered an intriguing and thought provoking narration of one woman’s foray into wedded bliss, and she performs it beautifully. Her fast Irish lilt is a pleasure to listen to, and has us all spellbound. Her rhythm and pathos builds and breaks in rhythm with the story, which is a skill appreciated by the audience. The story itself doesn’t break any barriers, though it’s cleverly developed - particularly the way it builds up into a crescendo of doubt which spills all over the audience like a shaken champagne bottle.

Overall, Appropriate is a 3 star script brought to life by a 5 star performance. There’s undoubtedly elements of the script written for an Irish audience, which lurk over the heads of a largely non-Irish Ed Fringe audience. This doesn’t detract from the performance, as Scott’s rapidly polished delivery provides a relentless offering of comedic observations that have us laughing at the next quip, before we remember we didn’t understand the last one. Definitely worth seeing before the Fringe is over.

Reviews by Jodie McVicar

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Performances

Location

The Blurb

Sorcha loves weddings. Just like all the other girls in the parish, she's been dying for her big day since forever and ever. The thing is... she has just run away from her own reception. Perched on the edge of her perfectly planned life, Sorcha is pure ragin' at the dawning reality that she has never really listened to herself. Can she ever go back? A darkly funny tale of fighting for love (literally) in rural Ireland and a lifelong quest to settle down. 'Engrossing... winningly tongue in cheek... an affecting solo' **** (Irish Times).

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