Tickets and more information: https://sohotheatre.com/shows/dust/
Production photos by: The Other Richard
Running until: 17th March.
After being dubbed as the next Phoebe Waller-Bridge, its easy to see why after watching this expertly written solo play Dust at the Soho Theatre. Milly Thomas stars as Alice, a young girl who has just committed suicide. Alice becomes a fly on the wall and is able to see how her friends and family react to her death. Fresh off a sell out run at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, this hard hitting, tour de force of a performance is one of the most gripping showcases of underrated talent in London Fringe Theatre.
Thomas keeps the audience at knife’s edge with a script that keeps a balance between cheeky comedy and outright devastation. As Alice jumps from house to house, on the outside looking into her friends and family, Thomas transitions from Alice into Alice’s parents, brother, best friend and boyfriend seamlessly; particularly evident in her posture and voice. I found Alice’s brother’s speech to be a particularly moving scene.
Although she reflects on how her death has affected her loved ones, Alice never uses them as a place to blame for the state of her mental health – an almost rarity in a time where 13 Reasons Why exists. If anything, this play shows a glimmer of a light at the end of a very dark tunnel. Instead of wallowing, Alice reflects on the parts of her loved ones lives that she could’ve been a part of.
At the end of the performance, Milly Thomas gave a short but moving speech about the collaboration the play has with the charity, Samaritans. If this play teaches anything, it’s that we can find hope if we start talking and the Samaritans is a good place to start talking. Although the play is 80 minutes of what happens when Alice’s life ends, Milly Thomas’ fantastic writing starts a conversation point. The Soho Theatre Upstairs is a small space perfect to showcase new talent, which I felt unintentionally mirrored how society is starting to reduce stigma around mental health. We’ve all got to start somewhere, right?
Until next time,