Review: Auto-Engrain A One Woman Show, We Are Bosstress, By Hannah Goslin

 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)

A small, yet intimate audience, this felt very apt and appropriate for the following content from Auto-Engrain.

Auto-Engrain: A One Woman Show is a tale about domestic violence within a relationship, the after effects, therapy and un-apologetic women. Kate tells us about her traumatic experiences through dating and sex in the wake of coming out of the clutches of a physically and mentally abusive relationship.

Kate is a very funny character. The story line crosses from comedic to serious effortlessly and she is a likeable character that we can all relate to. She is unapologetic for who she is, slightly outspoken, full of curse words and this comparison between who she is and how she changes and emulates her subservient relationship self is effective and smooth.

Kate is a botanist and so touches upon this in her telling or the inclusion of botany wording. However, this felt a little lost in the telling. There is a moment when we are referred to a projection which crosses botany and the levels of red flags in dating but it felt out of place and at points not needed.

We have the odd moment when the “stage hand” doubles as a character or brings on staging and props. But there are other times when they don’t and either the main performer does this or presents an insinuation through one sided responses and lighting changes. He was brilliant in his part but I did wonder whether it was a case of being all or nothing. I refer to a previous review, The Real William Shakespeare… when their stage hand is his own entity and engages in the background. Perhaps it needs to be factored in that the main performer covers these elements or that our stage hand is given more of a platform to support.

Auto-Engrain: A One Woman Show is an important production on domestic violence and the impact this can have on a person and who they are. It is comical and yet emotional but still needs a little honing to give it direction, theatrically.

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