April De Angelisâ€™s Jumpy, directed by Cora Bissett, is a bittersweet contemporary comedy with a cast of Scottish acting talent.
It is 2009, and Hilary, the world-weary mother, is struggling with growing older. Fear of redundancy, a relationship with her husband that is slowly dying and a rebellious teenage daughter leave her desperate for a nightly glass of wine or two. She reflects on her own younger years, her trips to Greenham Common and the freedom of the new wave of feminist thinking of the 1970s, while battling to understand why her teenage daughterâ€™s view of feminism is so very different to her own.
Designer Jean Chan has cleverly piled the set sky-high with signs of everyday life, leaving it looking on the verge of collapse at any moment. Pauline Knowles as Hilary and Molly Vevers as Tilly play their mother and daughter roles perfectly. Keiran Gallacher, as Tillyâ€™s boyfriend Josh, is the epitome of a monosyllabic teen. Gail Watson, as Hilaryâ€™s man-mad actress friend, Frances, gives a delightfully over-the-top performance, which is at times almost too unpleasant to watch. Her burlesque dancing is a sight to behold. As both Frances and Joshâ€™s father, Roland, are actors, there is plenty of scope for acting in-jokes.
The music of Jumpy (which even comes with its own Spotify link so audiences can enjoy the playlist at their leisure) accentuates each scene, and the dreamlike sequence to Smells Like Teen Spirit that ends Act One features more notable dancing.
A poignant, funny play that examines the lives of humans, and shows that nothing gets easier just because we get older.
Jumpy runs until 12 November 2016 at The Royal Lyceum Theatre, Edinburgh.