Confessions of a Redheaded Coffeeshop Girl

Joanie Little is an honest, open and kookily sexy waitress working in Gabe's Coffee Shop in Toronto. With upbeat charm and endearing clumsiness, she negotiates her customers' tricky personalities and orders while trying to find some sparkle among her uninspiring surroundings.

It's Jane who gives the loveable Joanie a most apt piece of advice which makes a wonderful take-home message from this feel-good play: "Just be you, Joanie".

Joanie has a degree in anthropology but, with the job market being what it is at the moment, she's going to have to pass the time making coffee until her dream job in fieldwork comes along. To entertain herself - and us - she transforms her dull surroundings into an exotic Animal Kingdom. She imagines all her customers as its animal inhabitants, making some absolutely spot on observations.

We see Joanie stepping out from behind the coffee bar, reclaiming her identity beyond the apron and name badge, and letting us into her embarrassing secrets and joyous triumphs. The joy of the piece comes from her enthusiasm for life, her down-to-earth approach and her sincere efforts to make the best of all she's given.

Rebecca Perry as Joanie manages lovely and hilarious transformations into the other characters, such as miserable Mike the Ex, who works tragically nearby, and Monique, who pops in everyday for her detoxing té vert. We are totally on her side right from the beginning.

The piece is brilliantly enhanced with musical interludes and songs that sync perfectly into the story. Perry has a gorgeous jazz voice, capable of Cole Porter-esque perkiness and soulful richness.

Joanie's idol is, obviously, Jane Goodall and there's a fair amount of hero-worshiping going on. The fan-girling is as cutesy and entertaining as the rest of the piece and adds a lovely, real-life dimension. It's Jane who gives the loveable Joanie a most apt piece of advice which makes a wonderful take-home message from this feel-good play: "Just be you, Joanie".

Reviews by Cara Ballingall

C venues - C nova

Inglorious Insinuations of Insanity

theSpace @ Surgeons Hall

Free for All

Greenside @ Infirmary Street

If Only Diana Were Queer

C venues - C nova

Two Thirds

Underbelly, Cowgate

Much Further Out Than You Thought


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 £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now



The Blurb

Anthropology graduate Joanie Little is stuck working as a barista. Much like Jane Goodall did with chimpanzees, this upbeat Miss studies her available subjects: the customers of her coffeeshop 'jungle'... hilarity ensues! 'Our eyes and ears are locked into Perry's performance!' (NY Stage Buddy). ***** (CBC). Best Musical 2014 ( 'Solo performance at its best, with Perry rolling out a cast of characters ... like a wild kingdom field guide! I dare you not to fall in love with Joanie and, by extension, Rebecca Perry.' (Toronto Star). Toronto & NYC Fringe 2014 sell out!

Most Popular See More

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat

From £13.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Everybody's Talking About Jamie

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Pretty Woman: The Musical

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Life of Pi

From £19.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Lion King

From £45.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Matilda the Musical

From £25.00

More Info

Find Tickets