A gaggle of girls on a night out – it’s many people’s worst nightmare, and the night does indeed end in disaster.
The six young ladies seem to live together in the same flat, perhaps at University, although this isn’t entirely clear to the audience. What is clear is that they are all unique individuals with different personalities and various mental health issues. Lana Pheutan, writer and performer, is not afraid to touch on some emotive and current issues.
As far as characters are concerned there is the annoying one (played by Sarah Dingwall), the peppy one (Claire Docherty), the heartbroken one (Mhairi McCall), the one who hears voices (Becky Niven), the mysterious one (Niamh Kinane) and the one that holds the whole group together (Pheutan). They are an eclectic bunch and each actress is fully entrenched in her character, all managing to project humour and encourage empathy for their flaws from the audience.
Pretty Knickers Productions are a new all-female theatre company debuting their 2017 Edinburgh Fringe show in front of this compact but supportive crowd at The Wee Red Bar and they have obvious talent and interesting ideas. Out, though, is a little confusing. Aside from the opening uncertainty of where we are there is the lack of clarity about where the enigmatic Maeve (Kinane) has been, why she went there, what she learnt and why she has returned. This mystery is heightened in the closing frantic scene where she drives one of her friends to beat her into submission. But is she dead?
Perhaps these questions are intended to remain unanswered and allow for some ambiguity and supposition on the part of the audiences they hope to attract at the Fringe, but it may leave many frustrated.
Show over, the girls ask for everyone to fill in a feedback form asking for comments and suggestions for improvement. The opening gambit is “What did Out make you think about?” It may be left blank by some. However, there is plenty promise if they can answer some of these questions in August.