“If I’m feminine, does that mean I’m effeminate? Or if I’m effeminate, does that mean I’m feminine?”
This play is definite must see.
Looking at the nature of what it means to female in this modern world is the complex theme that underlies this exploratory, alternative play The F Words. From dance to poetry, the women that make up this show twist through many different and engaging methods to tell the stories of countless women and the struggle they face against the oppressing society of today.
As the audience walks in, they are greeted by a women dressed in black underwear, completely motionless, with various outfits laid out in front of her. The lights dim and to upbeat music four other women, also in black underwear, bounce on the stage and dress themselves in front of us. By the clothes they wear and the introductions they make, we begin to get a picture of the different personalities these striking women have.
From there, the play winds through the many issues that women must face in today’s society just for being female. What makes this play different from the usual rehashed, feminist rant though is that they don’t just use one method to make their point. They use spoken word, music, poetry, alternative dance... these countless methods are not unique in themselves but are performed with a touching originality and wit that succeeds in engaging the audience from start to finish.
The Pinched theatre company, for their second outing at the Fringe, have chosen a very talented group of women to perform on stage, who are highly competent in the many forms of stage performance that make up the show. The women spend their entire time on stage, switching between each story with smooth transitions involving dance and narrative. They fall into the character’s they personify with elegant ease, effortlessly bringing the poetry to life in front of the audience.
It is almost sad that the subjects that this play touches on – self-validation, the definition of gender, what it means to be beautiful – are not shocking in the least. They are still issues that must be constantly raised to be noticed and these women have done an amazing job at producing this in an innovative and magnificently performed way. For anyone, from those who enjoy artistic presentations of societal issues or those that simply want a little bit of education on feminist topics, this play is definite must see.