2018 was my first year at the Edinburgh Fringe which produced a bumper crop of excellent plays (look out for transfer details) but London has delivered some gems too.
Out of the 50-odd fringe plays there are 10 that really stand out but what strikes me most when revisiting them is how many evoked such a strong emotional reaction.
Yes, some are on the list for being highly entertaining but others made me feel angry or empowered or rebellious, some even a bit teary.
The other thing that strikes me is their diversity in ethnicity and gender balance tipped away from male dominance but I'll be writing more about that in another post.
So, in no particular order:
1. The Claim, Shoreditch Town Hall
Based on research into Home Office procedures this exposes the farcical system that asylum-seekers encounter but more than that, how incompetence endangers people's lives. It made me very angry.
2. My Mum's A Twat, Royal Court Upstairs
It's been an incredible year for Patsy Ferran, kicked off in fine style with this solo performance in a play about a girl's relationship with her mother who has joined a cult. Funny and spirited it also had dark edges.
3. Coconut, Ovalhouse
An effervescent love story and a coming of age story that challenged stereotypes.
4. Flesh and Bone, Soho Theatre upstairs
Shakespeare-esque lyricism combined with East End vernacular cleverly takes you on a revealing and entertaining journey that elevates the stories of those that often overlooked. Shakespeare would, no doubt, have approved.