Unapologetically raw, Randa Sayed takes you on a provocative journey in her intriguing production Experience & the Girl.
The show intently follows Sayed’s (The Girl’s) expedition through self-discovery, in particular highlighting her struggles as a young Arab Muslim girl exploring her sexuality.
Torn between following her head or her heart, The Girl is faced with the issue of choosing her religion or fulfilling her sexual desires.
Experience & the Girl is an interactive and sometimes impromptu piece that requires a high level of audience participation. Right from the beginning of the show, the audience are encouraged to engage with the nervous and frizzy haired girl who appears shy but endearing.
The Girl needs help deciphering her feelings, so she turns to the only ‘friend’ she can rely on: the Internet.
The voice of the ‘Internet’, played by Brigitta Brown, guides The Girl through each hurdle she faces. From how to approach the ‘guy from the theatre’ who she admires, to how to dress sexy; the Internet is relied on solely to explain each new concept to The Girl.
The production takes you on an emotional rollercoaster; you laugh at her, cry for her and even get a little paranoid that you will be selected from the crowd next.
Randa Sayed is exceptional in the melodramatic yet serious role of The Girl. With a minimalist set design, little dialogue and the eyes of the crowd locked only on her, Sayed never breaks character. She is able to tell a story purely using her body language and is able to portray a serious issue while remaining comical and engaging.
For the full 60 minutes of the production, the audience’s attention is completely anchored by Sayed’s commanding performance.
The experience is enhanced by the very witty and amusing voice of Brigitta Brown. Brown’s array of voices aids the performance of Sayed significantly and adds to the overall success of Experience & the Girl. Although Brown is never visible on stage, her role is fundamental to the production and was also executed fabulously.
This show has the ability to be thoroughly entertaining, while still covering very serious and real concepts. It definitely is not what you would expect, but this is not a bad thing.
It is equally vulnerable and sinister and really does provide a glance into the world of a Muslim girl living in a western world. With such serious themes, Sayed successfully uses a range of acting techniques to be engaging but also to deliver insight.
Experience & the girl is hilarious, raunchy and something you must go and see!
WARNING: This piece contains a level of audience participation and improvisation, with some sexual scenes (with or without tongue, depending on how you’re feeling that night), mild drug use and experts on the Qur’an.
We rate: ★★★★ 4/5 stars