Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * *
Cast: Maggi Green.
Controlled by the clock, everything to be done by a certain time or else the feelings of guilt and imperfection come steamrolling through, the sense of not having achieved even the most simplest of tasks during the time the clock wakes you and allows you the brief respite of dreams; this is the greatest form of punishment that humanity has bestowed upon itself, the complexity of time reduced down to moments in which life is either behind or ahead of self doubt and the insecurity of being seen as feckless and inadequate.
Dario Fo and Franca Rama’s Rise And Shine takes that sense of obligation to time and magnifies the guilt in a person’s mind to great effect by utilising the one person in each family to whom the clock never truly stops, the mother, whether that is in the actual female caregiver or the role taken on by a man to whose partner has left them with the responsibility is equally important, but it is to the mother that the world falls upon when things are not in place, when Time plays tricks on them by not alerting them to the rise of the sun or the simplicity of a key not being in the right place when it is needed at the right time.
As a society we place too much expectation and weight of guilt on mothers, we somehow expect the house to be always cleaned and meals ready when in actual facts what should be considered is the mental health of a person dealing with the demands of work, family and their own well being, in an age when being seen as having it all is crucial to some, we forget that what is most important is happiness and time not spent battling the clock, to not be all things to all men.
Maggi Green’s portrayal of a woman who is on the verge of snapping is enlightening and damning to all those who take advantage of such actions within their homes, who allow the woman and the mother to take on more and more responsibility to the clock.
For Burjesta Theatre and the Liverpool Fringe Festival this is a performance of honour and plain speaking, a monologue of great appeal that should resonate fully with all who see it.
Rise And Shine, it’s a new dawn and the clock is ticking against you.
Ian D. Hall