WORTH A LOOK?: *****
WHERE: Bush Theatre
WHEN: 13/2, runs to 3/3/18
Monica Dolan is perhaps best known for her roles in material as diverse as W1A, Inside No 9 and her BAFTA Award-winning turn in Appropriate Adult as Rosemary West.
- Read on for reasons including how we were surprised by Dolan’s tears midway through this monologue
Here she performs a 65-minute monologue that she has written herself in which she plays psychotherapist Tessa who looks after the mother of an eight-year-old who has had breast enlargements.
What follows is an exploration of what it feels like to be an ignored child who is over familiar with women’s magazines and thinks she wants a larger chest to attract male attention.
We also gain insight into the thought process of a mother on the receiving end of such requests.
The difficult questions it poses include how complicit all of us, the public and the media, are in exposing youngsters to oversexualised imagery.
What’s unexpected are the tears Dolan’s character begins to shed as she recounts the tale, interrupted only by her vaping habit and increasingly frantic calls to a mobile hilariously blaring out the Cagney and Lacey theme tune.
It’s a committed performance, so impressive it could only have been given by the author of the piece.
It’s a testament to the writing that the hour-plus in Tessa’s stimulating company flies by as Dolan pulls no punches with a thought-provoking piece of new writing that is brought to painful life by one of our most underrated actresses.