Juice Straws Are Bleak

Juice Straws Are Bleak is a fantastical, surrealist adventure experienced by a class of school children under the disinterested gaze of their teacher. It’s hard to compare to anything, but it has flavours of The Mighty Boosh, though in an original way.

This could easily become a knockout cult hit.

The audience follow the imaginations of, initially, one and then a class of children. The portrayals of the children and of their highly active minds is joyful. The writing and creation of this piece is incredibly strong, and writer Marysa Finnie should be commended for her fantastic imagination. Directed with an obviously skilled hand by Lynne Jefferies, a huge amount of work has gone into this manic piece of DIY fringe theatre about isolation and comprehension of the world around, and inside us.

The whole cast do a truly fantastic job. It is unusual for a fringe show not to have any weak links, but this show proves the exception. Unfortunately, there are too many to mention. However, a few must be commended. Beatrice Grannó is a natural clown; she plays the closest thing to the lead in this ensemble piece, and early on confirms she is an absolutely solid foundation of chaotic rock for the audience to rely upon. Her focus and immersion in her heavily physical mime character is beautiful and a joy to watch. Taylor Danson’s Jimothy begins humorously but evolves interestingly. He seems to sink further into the character as the play goes on and brings an excitement and edge to the stage which adds wonderfully to it. Allie Munro is simply hilarious as the Teacher. This is the counterpoint role to Grannó’s Little Girl, adding a delightful dose of lethargic cynicism to contrast with Grannó’s youthful enthusiasm and curiosity. Her cutting jibes are expertly delivered and her nonchalance keeps the audience tittering. Stefanie Reynolds pulls it put the bag with her Motivational Speaker. She hits every punchline perfectly and has the audience in stitches. A brief mention must be made of the set design and, specifically, the Story Book Illustration. This is exceptionally crafted by Daniel Kettle, whose artistic skills create immediate immersion.

The experience is phenomenal. It’s a little rough around the edges, and some moments could perhaps be streamlined, but this is an out-there, pioneering piece of surreal craziness which should definitely be seen. With a bit of further development this could easily become a knockout cult hit.

Reviews by Dixon Baskerville

Underbelly, Cowgate

Christeene: Trigger

★★★★
C venues - C south

The Fool

★★★★
Greenside @ Infirmary Street

Buzz: A New Musical

★★★★
theSpace on the Mile

Bit of Sunshine

★★★★
Pleasance Dome

Police Cops

★★★
Underbelly Med Quad

The Starship Osiris

★★★★★

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

We welcome you with open fingers to Picklesworth Primary. Where the kids have seen too much and know too little. Following a plastic bag with a taste for hardcore punk music, take a glimpse into the heart of Picklesworth where we dare you to come face-to-face with the good old pits of loneliness and alcohol-inducing disappointment. Kids can be cruel, dreams don’t come true and whales are the loneliest animals on the planet. It’s grim, it’s bleak, it just happens to be goddamn funny.

Most Popular See More

The Play That Goes Wrong

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Heathers The Musical

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets

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

Life of Pi

From £19.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Wicked

From £31.00

More Info

Find Tickets