Womenswear

Through a strong ensemble cast, this piece aims to expose the truth behind the juxtaposition of the stereotypical woman and the reality which every woman struggles to deal and cope with in our modern age. This theme may not be original, and it almost seems predictable in itself that a university company would bring this kind of show to the Edinburgh Fringe, but the strong cast and raw emotion turn this into an interesting piece - one which exposes some truths behind the pressures women face in the modern age.

the strong cast and raw emotion turn this into an interesting piece - one which exposes some truths behind the pressures women face in the modern age.

In this show we follow the character of Jane who, played by all cast members, is meant to represent the average everyday woman. However, like every woman there is a voice in her head which tells her she is living her life wrong and not living up to the expectations she ought to be; she should be skinnier, settle down, have kids, but also have the perfect career. Here we see the blurring of the lines between society's expectations and her reality as it explores the average woman’s attempt at discovering who she is and what she wants to be as she begins to reject the expectations placed upon her.

The problem with a show that attempts to expose the dangers of generalisation is that, with a cast this small, they themselves fall into this trap of oversimplification. They follow a young, middle class, white girl’s story, but her problems and faults within society’s expectations will be very different to many others. Therefore, whilst they make many good arguments within their piece, their overall message of exposing the dangers of generalising women falls flat, as they fail to look at the wider picture outside of this one young girl.

However, despite this fatal flaw in their overall concept, one cannot deny that the ensemble produce strong performances and use the space in an innovative way through their use of lighting and movement meaning that the whole piece is engaging and interesting to watch. It is just a shame that they don’t add anything more to this concept, as it feel a lot like a repeat of many other shows; ultimately they fail to expose the pressures of women from a different angle or perspective.

Reviews by Emily Blackwell

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Performances

Location

The Blurb

We cook. We clean. We cry. We buy shoes. We wear bras. Sometimes we burn them. We bitch. We moan. We seduce. We give birth. We menstruate. We wash clothes. We pick arguments. We know what we want. We are attention seekers. We are the emotional sex. We are from Venus. Drawn from fact and fiction, history and fantasy, Womenswear explores the point where expectation and reality meet. The Lincoln Company uncovers and confronts stereotypical attitudes towards womanhood. Follow us on a journey to discover the truth behind the stereotype and reveal the real life that women wear.

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