0 Days Without Crying
Reviewed – 9th April 2018
“Emotionally jarring, often heart-wrenching, liberatingly funny and overall too real”
Arriving at Landor Space, one is greeted with the light pinks and lilacs of magnolias in full bloom, the familiar browns, reds and umbers of a local pub, and the excited chat between groups of theatre-loving friends arrived in twos and threes to enjoy a new play. The spring showers didn’t put anyone off and the show enjoyed a full house on its opening night, with an atmosphere of undiluted attention, support and enthusiasm, all of which made for a very welcoming and inclusive experience for all who were there.
Caterina Incisa’s 0 Days Without Crying is a solo piece, a tragicomedy following the ups and downs in a young woman’s life as she works out (through trial and error!) how to function as a twenty-something year old juggling everyday life and daily arguments with anxiety and depression. Dubious judgment and ill-advised decisions are in abundance, and hilarity ensues on a regular basis. Emotionally jarring, often heart-wrenching, liberatingly funny and overall too real, the piece is intended as an emotional roller-coaster exploring the terrifying and hilarious aspects of coming of age, the pressures suddenly thrust upon young women (and young adults in general), the responsibilities, emotions and situations for which one never really feels prepared, and all the wonderful times when things go sideways that you can’t help but laugh at yourself for.
As a production it is strong on many levels: the writing is powerful, Wilfred Petherbridge’s music choices and sound snippets are clever and entertaining, and the set design (Jo Wright) is colourful and elaborate without becoming laboured.
Insica’s performance was generally engaging and communicated the text well. She held the audience’s attention throughout and could have you howling with laughter one minute and guilt-ridden and apologetic three sentences down, an effect that left the audience feeling unsure of their reactions and even more sympathetic than before. Her character portrayals were particularly entertaining, and as she seamlessly switched between the sketchy narcissistic therapist, to that friend left over from Uni who you can’t quite bring yourself to tell you don’t really like, it was obvious that she was absolutely in her element. The only unfortunate aspect was her apparent self-consciousness – punchlines which could have been uproarious were often brushed over, some were even indiscernible, and the mood shifts happened so suddenly that neither text nor audience were given the chance to breathe. Whilst this was likely down to opening night jitters, it meant the performance came across as work in progress – though a few extra seconds between lines would have more than made up for this.
Lasting just under an hour, very in touch with its time and exceptionally promising, 0 Days Without Crying is a challenging piece sure to strike a chord with anyone who appreciates that being twenty-five is not an easy business.
Reviewed by Laura Midgley
0 Days Without Crying
Landor Space until 11th April