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How To Be Brave

“Fun but scrappy one-woman play”

Two years ago, Welsh company Dirty Protest Theatre brought Alan Harris’ one-man play Sugar Baby to the Paines Plough Roundabout. It was a great show – a frenetic, fast-paced caper set in Cardiff.

Its offering this year, Siân Owen’s How To Be Brave, sets out similarly, but never reaches the same heights as Sugar Baby.

We’re in Newport this time around, following thirty-something single mum Katie as she careers around the city, fleeing from some unspecified family trauma, desperately trying to summon up the courage to face it. It’s whirlwind ride – she steal BMXs, smashes up civic monuments and stabs a man with a fork.

It’s fun and funny, with a pleasing sense of place. Laura Dalgleish brings a boisterous, bruising humour to the role of Katie, too, but Owen fails to focus on the story’s underlying themes – the post-industrial life of Newport, and what it takes to be brave in the face of a crisis – and her narrative tips over from scrappy into scatty. Her woolly conclusion feels like a bit of a cop out.

Catherine Paskell’s production is a bit of a disappointment – and another example of a Roundabout line-up that’s failing to fully fire.

Sugar Baby review at Roundabout at Summerhall, Edinburgh – ‘stonking good fun’


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Production Details
Production nameHow To Be Brave
VenueRoundabout, Summerhall
StartsJuly 31, 2019
EndsAugust 25, 2019
Running time1hr
AuthorSiân Owen
DirectorCatherine Paskell
CastLaura Dalgleish
ProducerDirty Protest Theatre
VerdictA scrappy, scatty one-woman play that fails to follow-up on 2017 hit Sugar Baby
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Fergus Morgan

Fergus Morgan

Fergus Morgan

Fergus Morgan

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