I am an emotional creature: the secret life of girls is a relatively new offering from Eve Ensler, the writer behind the famous “Vagina Monologues”, and the worldwide V-Day campaign against violence and discrimination against women.
While the 8 cast members of I am an emotional creature were confident and credible young actors, the script almost unavoidably comes across as “preachy”. The text is confronting and the tone is angry. There was very little light and shade in this work. The stories from Ensler’s book of the same name, released in 2011, although fictional, are told from the first person perspective of young survivors of violence and sexual violence, which is hard going for an audience. This didn’t stop the Fringe-goers though. The season sold out, an extra show was added, and sold that out too.
This is important work, but it is not entertainment. There is a trigger warning in the programme and several audiences members were visibly affected by the content. The desire for the writer, producers, cast and all involved is that this work sparks important conversations. It can promote awareness and incite action to defend the rights of women all over the world. It can inspire positive self-esteem and build hope for the future. With all of these potential positive effects, comes responsibility. It is noted in several places that care was taken to choose age appropriate material for the young girls on stage (the youngest being 11 and the eldest 19), but there is a further responsibility to safely take the audiences on the journey as well. This is a more difficult task and if this project is to venture into schools, it will have to be with great planning and follow-up.
The intimate performance space was crowded and hot, and the actors were just centimetres away, which intensified the impact of their performance. The cast was Prea Cunningham, Isabelle Tolefe, Asher Yasbincek, Lola Baldsing, Asha Nichols, Rebecca Riggs-Bennett, Jazz Cheree Riley and Snowy Pele Primmer. All of these young ladies can be commended for their commitment to the roles and their conscious, authentic presentations.
Emotional Creature Australia presents
I am an Emotional Creature
Venue: Noodle Palace at Central - Ramen Room | 19 Francis Street, Northbridge, WA
Dates: 18 – 21 February 2015
Tickets: $16 – $20