How Not To Live In Suburbia – Annie Siddons

The imagery contained in How Not to Live in Suburbia production at the Soho Theatre is fantastic –  as is the accomplished performer/writer with  a great voice – Annie Siddons. The comedy starts with the crisis of her marriage break up or the sh** that hit her life as a result.  The subsequent move to Twickenham – Home of Rugby – gives rise to the Suburbia of the title. The reason for the move? – Her family of two children that can’t be in the show, so are represented by two small trees in pots.  The agony of leaving friends behind who live in enclaves of creativity and then being confronted by people with suburban perceptions and values is something that rang peals of laughter from the audience – yes we all know this one.  The sacking from the book club, the imaginary pass shown to get out of Twickenham and into town, the boyfriend, the drinking  and ….the depression.  The comedy and best acting comes through in the films that Annie Siddons made with Richard Dedomenici.  The hulking Walrus of Loneliness and Seal of Shame crowd in on her as she begins to sink into some suburban puddle of oblivion and loses the will to live let alone write.
The live stand up with her younger alter ego (you can tell by the big hair wig) played by Nicki Hobday, is where the depression becomes more depressing.  One of the small tree children gets ill with an ongoing condition and it’s sad and the sadness begins not to get funny any more.  It becomes reminiscent of Brené Brown and her talks on shame and vulnerability.
At the end Annie Siddons gave out badges and I got one saying “I love f**cking London”, so I perhaps got it horribly wrong in wanting to give her a hug and recommend a good counsellor.

Annie Siddons - How not to Live in Suburbia
Annie Siddons – How not to Live in Suburbia

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