Gillian English is a comic storyteller, here to help us all sort out the #timesup movement, one angry moment at a time. Giant and Angry takes advantage of the current social and political climate and English is unapologetic about what women have to say.
Now a Melbourne local, English grew up in the Canadian wilderness with feminist parents, in particular a father who was determined his daughters would be able to stand up for themselves.
Giant and Angry is a tale of growing up tough, yet feminine. Of being taught how to physically incapacitate an attacker while being in beauty pageants and working as a showgirl. The comedic examples from English’s youth serve to demonstrate the absurdities of expectations placed on women and the sad truth that being able to defend yourself is a requirement for life.
This performance is a triple threat; in the physical sense the audience is provided a comprehensive shopping list of injuries to inflict on a potential predator; for pure entertainment, the belly laughs brought from the dark, Fargo-esque humour shared by English and her family; and crucially, English’s ability to curate her details to provide the right balance of imagery and emotion in each story.
The Giant and Angry experience overall will leave you wondering, who is the murderer in my family? What is the best way to dispose of a body?
Perhaps in a more practical sense, a recommended question is; When can I catch another of the performance pieces brought to FRINGE WORLD by English? Both playing throughout February, the autobiographical Drag Queen Stole my Dress and, confirming her artistic versatility, Comedy of Errors for Kids. An accessible, modernised Shakespearean comedy for the whippersnappers.
The opening night of Giant and Angry was on point, and beware, that point is sharp!
Go get angry at the Belgian Palace until Feb 9 and Skybox at The Game Sports Bar til Feb 25.