Review: Iphigenia In Splott @ Sherman Cymru
Still reeling from the great success of NTW's Mother Courage the night before, this show at the Sherman was set to also be a triumph.
In Gary Owen's new work, taking Greek myth as its core inspiration, he has scripted a play so razor sharp and sourly gifted (with several invokes for Cardiff residents).
It will leave an audience bruised after some 70 minutes of hardcore Splottness.
Effie (performed by Sophie Melville), our one characters here, is from the said area of Cardiff. Through much talk of sex, drugs, fights and so much more, she is a realistic portrayal of any teenager in Cardiff, who may have slipped through the cracks. We pity her, her root for her, we loathe her, we adore her. Her words on the cuts at the very end of the show couldn't be more apt as we are now facing five more disgusting and cataclysmic years of Tory power. *Shudders*
Melville (who has appeared in Under Milk Wood and Romeo & Juliet) is totally scathing as Effie. A supernova, hell bent on either the heavens or hell, only being redeemed by her beyond harrowing miscarriage. We may bow our heads down to ignore Effie on the street, but here we marvel at Melville's bitingly real portrait of essentially a chav, but one who is blessed with a soul.
Like with Mother Courage, my advice is to frequent this show with your presence.
Striking, wonderful and quintessentially Cardiff.
Rating: 4 stars
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Photo Credit: Mark Douet