• Amy Toledano

She Is A Place Called Home presented by Esohe Uwadiae

What Is It?

She Is A Place Called Home by Esohe Uwadiae is a play with two performers, playing sisters who tell the story of their family.

What Is It About?

Two sisters prepare for their father’s wedding, where he’ll acquire a second wife, in addition to their mother. Their big assignment is to perform a traditional dance at the ceremony, a task that the youngest sister (played by Jordan Noel) struggles with. Each sister is also battling her own personal dilemmas. The older sister (played by Nicole Acquah) works in a toxic environment where she makes little money and the youngest sister wrestles with her anorexia.

How Did It Make Me Feel?

The subject matter is very intriguing, but difficult to digest in one play. The show tackles anorexia, polygamy, and religion all within a less than two-hour span. All these topics also seems to be unrelated. There is only one full scene dedicated to the older sister’s lack of religious devotion, thus making it seem out of place. The younger sister chastises the older for not attending church, but we never learn why. This subject only returns at the end of the piece, where the older sister is pleading with a god that she only half believes in. The scene is supposed to be emotional, but falls flat.

The other two subjects that the play tackles — anorexia and polygamy — seem unrelated, which, as an audience member, makes it seem like you’re watching two plays. On one side, the younger sister has relapsed, but we never learn why. On the other side, the two sisters fight about their father’s decision to acquire a second wife. In all of this, we never meet their mother or father and I wish that we had. By not seeing the mother, she is rendered helpless and voiceless and by not seeing the father, he comes off as an evil tyrant. Because of this, it’s confusing as to why the younger sister unwaveringly defends him, especially as she makes it clear that she does not agree with polygamy.

Anything Else?

The play would be a lot stronger with the addition of the mother and father characters. It’s clear that the writer doesn’t agree with polygamy, but it would make the piece more dynamic to hear from the other side. Without the presence of these two characters, the play is 80% telling and 20% showing. However, the performers do a fantastic job with the given material. They are believable and able to reach emotional highs and lows seamlessly.

Rebecca x

She Is A Place Called Home is playing in the Cavern, VAULT Festival, until the 8th March 2020.

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