We’re in 2020 and it is still such a political act to see a show performed by three female actors, written and directed by women, specifically speaking about girls. This conjecture is already something to be celebrated but the celebration has to be even bigger when the show is so amazingly put together.
The acting is absolutely stunning and the task the actresses in Scenes with girls have is not easy. During 1 hour and 20 minutes Rebekah Murrell, Tanya Reynolds and Letty Thomas have to perform 22 different scenes that demand polar opposites states of mind and environments.
I have to highlight Murrell’s work. She is the a strong vehicle that leads the show to the many different stations it goes to. Her security on stage is remarkable and she surfs the funny and sad waves, that the plot brings, with mastery. Her complicity with Reynolds is beautiful to see and the two create both a sweet and lethal dynamic that makes you believe they will either kiss or scream at each other at any time. Thomas has the arduous task of interfering in this relationship and she finds a very interesting way of belonging to the nucleon even though her character is a funny outsider.
The short breaks in between the scenes establish the show’s pace and logics and contribute to the astounding aesthetics: there is a young, millennial light, pretty and in some way mechanical style that defines this show. The set by Naomi Dawson is very exciting and the fact that the audience is disposed all around it allows it to be seen from different perspectives.
Scenes with girls director Lucy Morrison does well in ensuring that at least one of the actors is visible at all times. The feeling is that you are more than an observant in this show, you feel like you are given the opportunity to live some moments of these girls’ lives with them.
The text by Miriam Battye is very clever, funny, honest and millennial. It questions the boundaries of relationships, reflecting about toxicity and co-dependence in friendship and love. It is also a beautiful portrait of what the society expects from girls in their twenties and how they respond or challenge those expectations. Battye’s writing in Scenes with girls is fresh and remarkable and I can’t wait to discover what else she has to share with the world.
Scenes with girls is playing at The Royal Court Theatre until the 22 February. For more information and tickets, see the Royal Court Theatre website.