Stay Big and Go Get 'Em

At times hard to follow and at others uniquely resonant, Maggie Widdoes’ one-woman show Stay Big and Go Get ‘Em is the perfect example of how the Fringe brings what you least expect, at the time its needed most.

A mile-a-minute performance about fear, grief and horniness

Instantly likeable with her wide-eyed energy and unapologetic physicality, Widdoes prefaces the show by saying it is NOT stand-up, but rather a comedic life story. With our expectations set, Widdoes loops us in on her bumpy life path thus far, going from fretful pre-schooler to Korn-loving ‘Good Time Girl’ to the self-aware adult she is today.

With the frenetic energy of someone you won’t be surprised to learn has ADHD, an easily distracted Widdoes does herself a disservice by trying to fit so many ideas into one hour. By the show’s end, there are a million ideas scattered across the floor, many of them references to American pop culture that don't necessarily travel that well. While some might find Widdoes’ truth nonsensical and a little perverted, her unabashed telling of her deepest fears and desires makes us all that little less ashamed of ourselves in the process.

Skilfully delivered with a linguistic precision that sometimes feels too well rehearsed, Stay Big and Go Get ‘Em is anything but thrown together. It’s a carefully thought-out exploration of life in all its intricacies, with baby Widdoes at its centre, growing and learning in each moment.

The show tackles some dark themes, including depression and suicide but stays buoyant with the aid of multimedia slides showcasing cartoon characters in compromising positions. Childlike but mature, chill but not, smart but dumb (by her own measure), Widdoes’ show exemplifies her own contradictions and finds acceptance in the process.

And as her therapist says, that is OK.

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Reviews by Laura Tucker

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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 £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
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Performances

Location

The Blurb

From womb to big-naturalled woman, Maggie is taking an account of her life lived as a diagnosed dick-hungry, dead-ass too-many-feelings-having human. Join her solo debut at the Fringe with a deep-dive into the absurd workings of grief, fear and lifelong horniness. It's time to see what the step beyond awareness is, what kind of transmutation is possible, in this public exercise of personal alchemy. Finally, we're giving these generations of wacky women a f*cking break.

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