Reviewed by Lauren Donikian
There is nothing wrong with being average and Anita Lovell proves this in her one woman show. In an orange romper, Lovell welcomes everyone in with a lip-sync number that gives us an insight into her mind. She is excitable, dedicated and has no fear making eye contact with her audience. It is endearing to see a performer giving it their all. Despite believing they are average.
Lovell tells us about all the hobbies that she started from a young age, until now. Only getting as far as her mind would allow. She is fearless in this performance, but as a child her fear got in the way and she was unable to progress to become a gymnast, a trampoline performer, or a rollerblader although I think she does this well. Through various costume changes, like taking off the orange romper to expose a blue leotard, removing that to expose a pink one and the addition of accessories like feathers, a multicolored boa, rollerblades and tap shoes the audience watch as Lovell recalls the original performances she performed in her youth. Not to mention, her children’s. It is relatable, and to see her inner child come alive is so fun. At times, Lovell plays the part of her mother, moving to the side of the stage to make the clear distinction between them but through this 50-minute performance Lovell is 110% herself. She performs and improvised poem, a tap dance, and plays the recorder. Just not the way you would expect.
This is a delightful performance, and it is no surprise that Lovell won the ‘Spirit of the Fringe Award’ for 2022. Whilst sharing her story, we are drawn in by her warmth and effervescent energy. Even in the awkwardness, Lovell is at ease and sure of herself. Although this show is lighthearted it has a heartfelt message, that brought this reviewer to tears. In its honesty and heart, Lovell encourages the audience to give life their all, just as she has done in this performance. Regardless of how far off they were from being the best. No one is perfect and after years of being on this earth there are times when we are all a little average and there is nothing wrong with that and after this show, I prefer it!