Scorch

Stacey Gregg

Prime Cut

Roundabout @ Summerhall

From 05 August 2016 to 28 August 2016

Rating: ****

Review by Philip Fisher

Scorch is a powerful monologue that draws a memorable performance from Amy McAllister.

She plays Kessie, an Irish seventeen-year-old confused by her gender. In fact, we first meet her nine years earlier when the uncertainty was in its early stages and follow a brief path to the point where she and another girl, Jules, fall in love ethereally.

One thing leads to another and they spend a night together, despite the reservations of Jules's mother.

The problem is that our protagonist masquerades as a boy, complete with inadequate artificial aids.

When Jules discovers her mistake, the consequences are devastating. By this stage, Kessie has joined a support group, presumably [Something] Anonymous.

However, Stacey Gregg decides that her play should follow the extreme line, meaning a trip to court on rape charges, a prison sentence in line with that for a gay-bashing murderer and rehabilitation.

The strength of this piece lies in its portrayal of an educationally limited girl who doesn't really understand herself or her sexuality and suffers terribly as a result.

It is to be hoped that plays like Scorch make society stop and think and, by doing so, relieve the suffering of those with similar gender identity issues to those of Kessie.