Crowbar Girl is an incredibly hilarious and brutally raw journey of finding, breaking and healing your heart. It is a journey that navigates through stages of recovering from a break up. The show takes a moment to find it’s feet, but once it does and it’s up and running, we’re given a stunning show. The show is self-aware and plays with this awareness with quick changes and surprise props. We are delighted with hilarious movie scene recreations (special mention to the fan), lip sync moments and a rather amusing advertisement for vibrators. The show and solo performer (Amy Lynne Westray) isn’t afraid to poke fun at themself, and this produces hilarious results. The show is at its strongest when it explores the many stages of dealing with a break-up. With an incredibly well-crafted mixture of hilarious anecdotes from her own life, and poetry, we are hooked away on an emotional rollercoaster. You may actually go from howling with laughter, to sobbing, all in the span of a sentence. As a poet myself, I want to take a moment to appreciate the use of word play and pacing when it comes to the poetry segment at the end of Step One. It’s such a beautiful use of words, and honestly just an exquisite poem. I’d been a bit worried about poetry deliverance as the show had mostly been funny anecdotes, imitations, story-telling and multi-media scenes, but they have done an absolutely brilliant job. I personally enjoyed the poetry segments of the piece the most, but these are also elevated by the sharp contrast of the light-hearted and funnier moments of the show.
The show is really good at cheering you up with current and entertaining pop culture references, and then immediately drowning you in universally relatable and brutal truths through her heart-wrenching poetry. “As if any of the speculations would change the reality of the situation” is one of the lines that has stayed with me long after the show is over.
Unfortunately whilst attempting to recreate a club environment, the initial few minutes are drowned out. The loud music does well to set the scene, but maybe not the best decision for a spoken word pieces. This is a bit frustrating given that the show revolves around the premise of the event discussed during this scene. However, it’s not actually an issue as you don’t miss much, and is referenced a few times throughout the piece.
The show also explores being queer and how this impacts the relationship that the performer has both with an ex-partner and with themself. However, I do feel like we could have focused on this a bit more, as it’s overshadowed by the main focus of the break up stages. These are my only two slight issues with the show, which is otherwise absolutely incredible. Also a quick shoutout to the PowerPoint part of the show, and I am still in awe of the use of a “generic white man” and the “TedTalk” references. It’s at this point that the show peaks and it maintains this incredible standard throughout the show, before ending on a strong tear-jerker speech.
Breaking the 4th wall, the performer manages to use spoken word to explain their journey and how they drafted this particular piece as a way of coping with the break up. This neatly ties into the final stage of the break up process; Acceptance. Or self-acceptance as the show encourages. It’s a raw, honest, personal reflection that leads to a moving close, and sure enough, there wasn’t a dry eye in the audience.
AD | gifted tickets in return for an honest review | photography by Owen Hollands