Joanne at Soho Theatre
The Clean Break theatre company are dedicated to educating at-risk women and female offenders by giving them the opportunity to take part in theatre. This month they bring Joanne to Soho Theatre. The play questions the direct fallout of cuts across the public services crucial to helping women in prison, by considering their effects on one woman.
Joanne is made up of five monologues, each telling the story of someone who works within the social services system and their subtle connection to the titular character. From an office worker to a receptionist at a hospital, each character’s monologue delivers a rich dialogue whilst creating a backstory and a personality for a persona that we never actually meet: Joanne.
This one-woman show, starring Tanya Moodie, is engaging and captivating from the very first monologue. Moodie’s performance is so powerful that the spectator is wary to blink in case they miss something telling in her facial expressions or body language. Her ability to easily switch between personae, giving each a distinct and entertaining voice, is incredible.
Performing on an intimate stage makes the play all the more compelling. The audience, which surround Moodie, feel they are being told the story directly, like there is nobody else in the room, and the spectator no longer feels like they are in a theatre. The stage is lit by alternating spotlight and coloured neon lights, which increase the drama of some moments and in others change the tone to a lighter, funnier one.
Joanne is a powerful play that challenges and performs stereotypes in a way that is neither boring nor time-tried. It’s both emotional and hilarious; you won’t want to take your eyes off the stage.
Joanne is on at Soho Theatre from 13th October until 31st October 2015, for further information or to book visit here.
Watch the trailer for Joanne here: