One of the challenges theatre has when it looks at life for Gen Z (and Millenials) is how to represent the digital world on stage. Modern communication is often embedded in texts, Whatsapps and DMs. Commentary is in social media posts and comments.
Racheal Ofori's play Flip! focuses on two friends and wannabe social media influencers, Carleen (Leah St Luce) and Crystal (Jadesola Odunjo), who make funny, sassy videos and are growing a following - but not enough to generate an income.
In the pursuit of more clicks, they start pushing the boundaries with their content, which results in getting cancelled. They decide to have another go and join the controversial new social video channel Flip!, which promises quick growth and money per play (flip).
You are thrown straight into 'CC's' fast-paced world of fun, funny and catchy videos as they pose and perform for the camera. Jadesola Odunjo and Leah St Luce also play the 'commenters' and other influencers delivering reactions in a dizzying range of different voices.
There is only a slight shift in gear when the friends are talking 'off-camera'. The lines between video performances and the real Carleen and Crystal sometimes blur, but that's the point.
Life in front of the camera, the pursuit of clicks, and influencer status start to consume and challenge their ideals and friendship.
CC's relationship with social media is fun until it isn't.
With Emily Aboud's skilled direction (read my interview here), Jadesola Odunjo and Leah St Luce brilliantly capture the frenetic energy, escapades and creativity of CC's social videos.
Flip! is a funny play, it's lively, fresh and fast-paced, brilliantly capturing the influencer corner of the digital world for the stage. But it also raises important questions about purpose and the pursuit of fame.
It doesn't necessarily offer any answers, but it may well have you questioning your relationship with social media and its influence.
I'm giving Flip! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Flip!, Soho Theatre
Written by Racheal Ofori
Directed by Emily Aboud
Starring Jadesola Odunjo and Leah St Luce
Running time 70 minutes without an interval
Booking until 25 November; for more details and tickets, visit the Soho Theatre website.
To Have and to Hold, Hampstead Theatre booking until 25 November ⭐️⭐️⭐️
King Lear, Wyndhams Theatre ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ booking until 9 December
Boy Parts, Soho Theatre ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ booking until 25 November.
Portia Coughlan, Almeida Theatre ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ booking until 18 November
Dear England, National Theatre ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ and a half; now booking for a run at Prince Edward Theatre from 9 Oct to 13 Jan 2024.
The Motive and the Cue, National Theatre ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️; now booking for a run at the Noel Coward Theatre from 9 Dec - 23 Mar 2024.