Lately, I’ve been getting an insatiable hankering for a bit of culture.
I had heard rave reviews about the play Hetty Feather and so I spontaneously decided to catch the matinee show on the very LAST day at DUCTAC.
Hetty Feather is based on the book by renowned English writer Jacqueline Wilson, whose books are world famous with over 30 million copies being sold in the UK alone.
As soon as the play started, I felt completely engaged in the plot and the creative and highly personal way it was narrated.
Set in the Victorian era, the story centers around feisty headstrong redhead, Hetty Feather who was abandoned by her mother and given up to the Foundling Hospital as a baby. The plot highlights her ongoing quest to find her biological mother as well as her relationships and experiences along the way.
There was a very small but solid cast, with some actors playing multiple roles. This could have been confusing, but the context was made very obvious due to the fact that the actors were incredibly talented, versatile and highly multi-faceted.
The sets and scenery were simple and improv was highly relied on. This is not a disadvantage and it was still captivating because it encouraged the audience to use the art of pretend, making it even more magical. The circus scenes were particularly entrancing.
There was an emotional roller-coaster element portrayed throughout. It had the perfect balance of pulling at your heart strings, yet not being too overwhelmingly heavy or depressing.
Although essentially a children’s story, the content was relatable to everyone.
All humans crave their own idealistic interpretation of “happily ever after.”
Like Hetty, we go from hurdle to hurdle and just when we think we have sussed it, we get smacked unexpectedly with a cold hard dose of reality.
The play deals with this theme this beautifully, but illustrates that despite it all, everything isn’t always doom and gloom. Life has an imperfect beauty and the random nature of it should be embraced, cherished and celebrated.
It also highlights the compassion in human nature and that the pursuit of happiness is an adventure within itself. .
Exceptional acting with a compelling, charming story.
Needless to say my thirst for culture was, indeed, quenched.