Travis Alabanza’s play Overflow is set in the toilet of a club from where transgirl Rosie (Reece Lyons) has locked herself in.
She talks about the power of a ‘pre-emptive pee’ but it isn’t just about being organised enough to empty your bladder knowing the facilities, later on, will be less than ideal for a comfort break.
As she talks there is the possibility that she might want to avoid public toilets for reasons other than queues and cleanliness.
The toilet setting is the literal backdrop for stories of her past experiences from primary school to more recent club visits but each is revealing, peppered with revelations about life as a transgirl, how friends and society views her.
At first, the club toilet experience is about acceptance and friendly camaraderie where the girls bolster each other with compliments and rally to help out when one of them is in need.
The atmosphere and banter are brought vividly and energetically to life by Lyons. And this happy exuberance contrasts with earlier and later experiences when the same energy turns into fear, frustration and anger.
There is the well-meaning friend who just doesn’t really understand, the prejudice and ignorance that see her shut out of a space once deemed safe.
Overflow is a rich, multi-layered play that is clever in its storytelling, Rosie is a powerful character, full of energy and fun but also fragile and weary of the fight to live as she wants.
I’m giving it ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️. It is being live-streamed at 8pm each night this week and you can get tickets from the Bush Theatre website. It is 60-minutes long.
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