A woman stands alone on an empty stage, save for a chair and a scattering of plates in the corner. She talks about wanting to be a florist, not a lawyer (or something else equally “respectable”), and at one point I think I might cry. Is it because she speaks of pressure from her parents, and we’ve all felt that at some point in our lives? Is it because she’s not particularly satisfied with her job and feels there must be something that would make her happier? Is it because she’s not happy?
Before me is a small shot glass of gazpacho. I’m not too sure how the entrée fits in with this dialogue, but I’m pleased to shoot it down my throat.
The Adelaide Fringe guide bills Season to Taste as a show that “explores the relationship women have with themselves, with each other and with the food they eat”. Though the words were well written and the three women inhabited them in ways which made me not only believe them, but relate to them, I was never quite sure how the food fitted with the monologues.
What I understood was that we, as women, feel pressure from every direction, so maybe the fact that the food was there was enough for us to interpret it as one more pressure. There is fear of being alone, of being a mother, of not being attracted to your partner. Do we drink too much? What does our Facebook status say about us? What if our desire to feel young and free manifests in a one-night stand?
There is not much joy to be found on stage but it’s a moving experience, deeply felt by the actors. I would recommend the show to women and their closest friends, who should enjoy the tiny portions of food which make up dinner. At $31 a seat, the evening is well worth it.
Season to Taste is playing at Experience Cafe on Hutt Street, February 16-18 and 23-25.
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