Fringe Review: "Above the Mealy-Mouthed Sea" is a One-Woman Hit
The sunsetting on the balcony of the Blue Room Theatre set the scene for Jemima Foxtrot's one-woman show: Above the Mealy-Mouthed Sea. A visceral and rollercoaster-esque experience, this show will grab you by your memory and pull you down the rabbit-hole. It asks you to become all ears for just an hour; sit forward, and listen up. With a slightly forced start and a bit of canned laughter the audience is swept away into a patchwork of comedy and tragedy, and Foxtrot; she's flying.
Her performance had the perfect balance of being at once vulnerable and unkempt, while being carefully curated, as she pieces together her childhood in a layered work of music and poetry. Though there are only a few musical interludes this show is all song; woven poetics and costume changes, a synchronicity demanded when performing solo. Her vocal depth and use of a loop pedal invited the audience to peer inside her tapestry of memories as if they were their own. Despite the solo performance, Foxtrot brings a dozen characters to life with only her words, words that bring the audience into a space of belonging that they made not have visited before.
Sometimes coming off as a bit frazzled, Foxtrot reveals the complexities of telling a story when it's one you didn't love being in in the first place. She articulates what often cannot be said with simplistic movement, encouraging the audience to face her in all her multitudes. This show boldly exhibits the power of imagery in a convoluted confessional, half comedic, half profession of the dark truths of the past. Listen close, and listen closer; she is speaking an unspeakable thing in an excellent performance.