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Fringe Review: Lie Low ***

Michael Cox reviews a production 'perfectly good production' that has 'an excellent performance'.

Lie Low is a perfectly good production buoyed by an outstanding performance.

Faye is having trouble sleeping. It might be down to mental health issues, or it might be the fact she was attacked in her own home a year previously. Talking therapy isn’t working, but something else might: exposure therapy. Enlisting her brother, whom she hasn’t spoken to since the attack, Faye attempts to face her anxieties head on. But other truths are about to be revealed—or not.

The production is actually much funnier than the description, though the undercurrent of a modern tragedy is always there. But therein lies the problem: Ciara Elizabeth Smyth’s script seems at times too forced. Make a list of all the possibilities surrounding the theme of assault, and sooner or later the play will touch on it. Energetic dance numbers and Rice Krispies are some of the eccentric swings it takes, but director Oisin Kearney’s production isn’t nearly as original as it appears to think it is.

However, the one ace up its sleeve is Charlotte McCurry’s performance as Faye. McCurry is phenomenal—committed to a difficult performance that has to cover lots of hard ground in 75 minutes, bookended by impressive swing dance choreography. It’s an excellent performance that is more than worthy of the price of admission—shame the production itself isn’t as spirited or surprising.

Lie Low performs at the Traverse Two space at the Traverse Theatre as part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Performances are at alternative times until Sunday Aug 27th. Image by Ciaran Bagnall.

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