Benet Catty Productions

The Girl Who Thought She Was Irish - Edinburgh 2011

Aug 14, 2011

Whatsonstage ****

“My mother’s an alcoholic. I use the term loosely. Mother I mean.” So begins Biddy O’Loughlin’s surprisingly engaging and thoroughly charming show in which she tells us about her life growing up in Alice Springs, Australia, later moving to Ireland where she felt she’d be more at home.

What makes this little show so absorbing is the neatness of the writing matched with the understated delivery. She stands on stage, her hands by her sides, and just talks. Occasionally she sings. Although she touches on the kinds of subjects – catholic guilt (“the internal monologue in my head was a broken record of apologies to God”), losing her virginity, cultural stereotypes – which have homes in many an Edinburgh show, she makes us really care about her story and engage with her personality. I could have happily spent a day listening to her.

Referring to her search for identity towards the end of this delightful hour, she tells us “I’ll figure it out but it probably wasn’t such a good idea to write a fringe show about it.” She’s wrong. I hope we see her here again.

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