Sitting in the Comedy section of the Fringe guide, this is a quirky piece of storytelling theatre by new company Five Wits and starring last year's So You Think You Write Funny winner, Rosie Holt. It follows Hayley, a young, spritely and rather haphazard girly girl, as she navigates unfortunate and awkward attempts to overcome the trials of modern life. It's a heartfelt plea to be taken seriously when the world puts you in increasingly unflattering situations, performed well and wrapped up in sugar, spice and many things nice.
It's a collage of pastel colours, gingham tablecloths and colourful caricatures, sewn together by Daniela Finley's kooky ditties
Hayley, who works with less than sympathetic co-workers in the Customer Services Department of a dodgy roofing company, wants to be thought of as "ballsy and sexy and clever and original" when, in reality, she isn’t seen as any of these things. How easily we can relate to Hayley is what really helps us enjoy the show. Her love life is not as successful as she'd like it to be and we've all been there when she's desperately tries to avoid an evangelist in the erotic section of a bookshop. Her happy-go-lucky outlook is infectious and her self-deprecating humour is endearing, even when the awkward smiles become a little repetitive.
Although the plot isn't particularly strong or structured, what's far more important is the manner in which the show is performed. It's a collage of pastel colours, gingham tablecloths and colourful caricatures, sewn together by Daniela Finley's kooky ditties - played on guitar and percussion, and sung with sugar sweet harmonies. The lyrics bring some edge to the piece and Finley has confident definition to her roles too. Similarly, James Corley and Patrick Neyman provide diverse and very funny character comedy. This kooky script is well-written and entertaining, although the monologues lacked the freshness of the rest of the dialogue. Hayley might be very girly but the overall feel of the piece isn't, and there was plenty of humour for everyone.
This is a refreshing and very funny show that passed quickly and was accompanied by chuckles and giggles throughout.