CultureClash Theatre and Greenwich Theatre Present “Under My Thumb” by Cassiah Joski-Jethi, Directed by James Haddrell
Maritime Radio’s Kitty Foster reviews the performance.
The audience were given food for thought with CultureClash Theatre’s Under My Thumb, Directed by Greenwich Theatre’s James Haddrell last night.
Under My Thumb sees the revival of the theatre’s partnership with CultureClash Theatre and the launch of a brand new studio theatre, which further puts a stamp on Greenwich theatre’s mission to support new and engaging theatre companies.
Having accidentally sat down in the audience seats upstairs, it dawned on me that we were at the wrong performance! We made our way downstairs to discover the studio theatre.
The new studio theatre was cosy, had a real sense of intimacy and was the perfect space for the play. I had originally anticipated an ‘Orange
is the New Black’ esque production. How wrong my colleague and I were.
What resulted was a compelling, meaningful and important piece. A tower of strength and unity stemming from a group of six women, in a dystopian present, the six are imprisoned for crimes against society. Brought together by a common enemy and facing indefinite incarceration, the one dignity remaining to them is their continuing belief in their own innocence.
You couldn’t help but feel a whole array of emotions. Perhaps as a fellow woman, I was somewhat more able to identify with the women than my male colleague. But not for one second were these women’s stories glamourised, or played in a melodramatic fashion…. as they would perhaps in OITNB. It was raw, gritty and truthful.
The play was expertly directed and tapped into your very core as a spectator. One moment I felt deepest empathy for a prisoner’s plight, the next I felt anger and resentment towards the perpetrators who essentially put them where they were. Using multimedia, we learned piece by piece about the terrible experiences each woman had endured.
It was at times difficult to witness the social and political challenges that women face today, being played out before my eyes. It does beg the
question ‘will we ever truly see gender equality in its purest form?’
It’s no wonder Joski-Jethi’s masterpiece was short listed for the Red’s Women Theatre Award 2016.
‘Under My Thumb’ will be at Greenwich Theatre until 2nd October. You’ll also get a chance to join in the Q & A session with the cast and crew after the performance.
This will be used as feedback to further develop the production, as it is hoped that Under My Thumb will go on tour next year.
Incredible performances from a very talented Cast and Director, and excellent use of multimedia throughout. This is not only a masterpiece but a social triumph. Highlight ‘Under My Thumb’ in your diary.
Find out more about this production and see what else is coming soon to Greenwich Theatre on their website.