“Nanette” by Hannah Gadsby

So we just went to see Hannah Gadsby at the Soho Playhouse, a small theatre that seated about 180 people – snugly.

We were sent down to this bar and thought – surely this isn’t the room she’s playing to… it would only hold 50 or so people!  Maybe they don’t know her her in America?

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But this turned out to be the bar area and later we were shown into the actual theatre… still snug though.

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I hadn’t read any reviews about Hannah’s show, but I did know that she had won all sorts of awards.

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I’ve seen her on the telly and at the Melbourne Comedy Festival and in The Great Debate, so we were expecting an evening of entertainment hilarity.

And that’s what we got, to start with, and throughout the show… From start to finish I was in all sort of tears – of laughter,… then of anger, of shock and in sorrow as Hannah told her story and took a stance against hiding behind the punchline any longer.  There were parts that were quite confronting and uncomfortable…. and that was clearly the point.  One reviewer, Sarah-Jane Collins said this: “It is not adequate to describe Nanette as comedy, it is not fair to describe it as anything else, but it is something entirely its own, and it is a joy and despair to watch it unfold.”  Her full review is here.

Here is another review by the New York Times – they sum it up better than I could.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/19/arts/hannah-gadsby-comedy-nanette.html

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If Hannah’s intent was to have her audience walk away taking a damn good hard look at themselves, then tonight was a job extremely well done.

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