Joan

An unashamedly silly retelling of the story of behind St. Joan of Arc. Once it gets started it successfully combines subversive fun and poetic spirituality. The story follows Joan throughout her life, from early encounters with Saint Catherine as the Saint guided Joan and her journey from home after witnessing the death of her mother during an English raid. Plotting Joan’s rise, adopting the clothes of a man, Joan lead an army as they lifted the siege of Orleans, restoring Charles VII to the throne and her subsequent fall and capture by the Burgundians, her trial and torture and eventual burning at the stake. Throughout, Joan is an engaging and entertaining figure to watch.

Joan is one of those shows that manages to be silly and bombastic, whilst also quietly reminding you to be who you want to be, no matter how complicated or simple.

Lucy Jane Parkinson - also known as the drag king LoUis CYfer - gives an endlessly energetic solo performance. Handling both Joan’s calm spirituality and innocent delight at exploration, and the wickedly observed men Joan meets along the way with charisma and energy. Showing the audience the magic behind the transformations, if anything, simply reinforced the impressiveness of Parkinson’s performance - and illustrates how thin the lines between genders in performance are. Lucy J Skilbeck’s script handled well the shifts between visions of saints and much more modern colloquial audience interaction moments.

You can feel the Fringe origins of Joan quite clearly. The piece makes use of plenty of audience interaction and tongue in cheek banter, although the use of black space for the performance made it feel like it might have been better suited to a more intimate venue. When I did catch the lyrics to the songs they were cleverly written and the music was catchy - but there was a definite issue with clarity. Also with the script - I thought I was familiar with the story of Joan of Arc, and found myself getting lost in the story.

The design of is simple but effective, a very versatile performance space that suited the huge variety of locations it needed to represent, whilst also harking back to a cabaret influence. Half of the wizardry had to come under the excellently deployed costume and makeup. The lighting and sound had a lovely sense of atmosphere, conjuring beautiful sunrises, battlefields and even disco smoothly whilst the sound design was expertly deployed to add mysticism to choice moments.

Joan is one of those shows that manages to be silly and bombastic, whilst also quietly reminding you to be who you want to be, no matter how complicated or simple.

Reviews by M Johnson

Old Fire Station - Cafe

An Intervention

★★★
M6 Theatre Company

Little Gift

★★★
Assembly Roxy

Thor and Loki

★★★
Paradise in The Vault

Quines

★★★★
Gilded Balloon Teviot

Grace

★★
Summerhall

Status

★★★

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

Performances

Location

The Blurb

An earthy story of courage, conviction and hope, this is Joan of Arc. Performed by drag king champion Lucy Jane Parkinson, history's greatest gender-warrior takes to the stage, dragging up as the men she defies in this smash-hit show.

Packed with guts, heart (and some well placed couscous), Joan is the latest daring fusion of lyrical new writing and cabaret prowess from the multi-award winning Milk Presents.

What happens when a disguise becomes something a lot more real and you have to fight for who you really are? A fearless solo play, with uproario us songs, about what it means to stand out, stand up and stand alone.

Most Popular See More

Hairspray

From £22.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Lion King

From £36.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Tina - The Tina Turner Musical

From £13.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Mamma Mia!

From £31.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Everybody's Talking About Jamie

From £25.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Play That Goes Wrong

From £25.00

More Info

Find Tickets