Theatre review: Perfectly Imperfect Woman

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Edinburgh Festival Fringe: Who thinks they’re perfect? A man puts his hand up. Danyah Miller laughs and says that it usually is a man.

Pleasance Courtyard (Venue 33)


A few more questions reveal that we, the audience, would largely like to be perfect despite the majority of us being pretty certain that we’re not. But in her imaginative one-woman show Miller tries to change our minds.

She’s the kind of person who chats to you in queues, she explains, and that everyone tries to avoid. Only that’s a mistake: she’s warm, amiable, funny and friendly, with her laid back double-denim and congenial approach. The audience discussion develops into a piece of storytelling, charting the history of Miller’s family as an alternative fairytale, focusing in particular on the women, using Russian dolls to help.

A pattern of mothers criticising their daughters, who in turn criticise their daughters emerges in a way that’s depressingly easy to identify with. Miller’s desire to break the chain with a more holistic kind of parenting is also well observed. But if ever you feel like you put too much pressure on yourself and others, the show’s final, thoughtful celebration of imperfection as representing freedom will help you to redress the balance.

Until 27 August. Today 12:45pm.