Breakfast Plays: B!rth – So Far as a Century’s Reach

Kirsten Greenidge

Traverse Theatre

From 18 August 2017 to 27 August 2017

Rating: ****

Review by Philip Fisher

The Traverse has saved the best in this programme of 45-minute plays until the end.

Portraying the African-American view, Kirsten Greenidge looks as women as they approach childbirth starting in 1916 and then each half century later.

In doing so, she taps into a series of ongoing debates. The major issues are the influence of their menfolk, the extent to which medicine is better or worse than a natural, more painful experience and, perhaps most alarmingly, the influence of insurance executives, who can seemingly override medical practitioners on a strategic level.

There is much food for thought and a good deal of versatile acting from Sharon Duncan-Brewster, Syreeta Kumar, Jamie Marie Leary, Tessa Parr and Abdul Salis in So Far as a Century’s Reach, which completes a worrying but informative and challenging series that is merely a sample of what this project has on offer.