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DUBLIN FRINGE FESTIVAL: Drip Feed – Project Arts Centre, Dublin

Writer: Karen Cogan

Director: Oonagh Murphy

Reviewer: David Keane

Brenda has made a few dubious choices. These often involve alcohol and Olivia. Olivia is Brenda’s ex-girlfriend, though Brenda struggles to accept the ‘ex’ prefix, even if it has been years. Rifling through someone else’s recyclable rubbish was never part of the plan, yet here she is. Comforted through the toughest of times by her best friend Veronica, Brenda now must learn to help herself.

Written and performed by Karen Cogan Drip Feed explores the darker side of relationships and the longing they can leave in their wake. Paired with this is struggle of finding yourself in an unaccepting environment and trying to forge a way through the hassle of being different. It is about making mistakes, then making them again, until the lesson is learned. Under the direction of Oonagh Murphy Cogan’s performance reaches out to the audience and insists that they bear witness to Brenda’s story. Reeled in by Cork humour and amiability, it’s an easy ask. There is fun in the direst of situations and Cogan, despite covering heavy topics such as homophobia and mental illness, offers us hope.

A set of a sofa bed, stained and bedraggled with life in the most literal sense, is the perfect base from which Cogan delivers this one woman show. The three bar heater and standard lamp give a nod to shitty flats throughout the nation and set the tone of this oddly nostalgic piece.

Drip Feed shines with what are becoming the hallmarks of Cogan’s work: dark humour, tender introspection, and brutal honesty. Beyond these traits Cogan delivers characters that are flawed but perfectly human and she possess the innate ability to connect with the audience, whether they like it or not.

Runs until 22 September 2018 | Image: Johnathan Birch

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The Ireland team is currently under the editorship of Laura Marriott. The Reviews Hub was set up in 2007. Our mission is to provide the most in-depth, nationwide arts coverage online.

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