Katianna Was Here

How does a person deal with a devastating incurable degenerative disease, and what effect does it have on their friends and family, is the focus of this play from edgeeradica. Katiana, a lively and born-to-be-a-leader sixteen-year-old, finds out she is affected by leukodystrophy – a disease that prevents her from walking, moving, seeing and, ultimately, speaking and breathing. As Katiana’s condition worsens, the play follows the reactions of her family and friends, and explores what light can be found in times of such darkness.

Laura Guthrie, who performs the title role of Katiana and also the role of younger sister Semeli, is the play’s writer and director. She also penned the score and lyrics for the show, and this is the only area that lets the show,down slightly. The songs are used as a transitional tool and don’t in honesty add anything to the play. The do allow the audience space to think and understand the story that's unfolding before them.

The idea of this production company to allow writers and artists to perform irrespective of ability is to be commended and the Fringe needs these sort of productions to continue pushing the boundaries. This play is proof of the belief that one person can attain a dream from a kernel of an idea with the right support behind them.

The play truly delivers in its exploration of the responses and personalities of several characters, and although the conclusion of the play could live without the musical number, it is an incisive observation of mourning and the necessity to let go of what we can’t hold onto.

It truly does ask the audience what really is the best side of humanity, and for this it is a worthy addition to the Fringe and shows excellent potential for life after August.

Reviews by Brett Herriot

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The Blurb

Katianna Robinson - life changes in a way no one would wish, and yet her life begins to have a purpose and meaning that goes beyond herself, to friends and family alike.