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Mine (or Unapologetically Autistic) | The Bridge House Theatre

A self-aware title sets the tone for a lighthearted hour on, no surprises, autism. The one-person show stars Daniel Toney, who also pens the autobiographical piece, taking those who visit the Bridge House Theatre on a journey through the writer's life (so far).

Toney begins, as himself, with attention-grabbing questions directly addressed to the audience, which continues throughout as he recounts experiences of growing up in mainstream education through to searching for employment like everyone else in society. Unlike most other shows surrounding “disability", this piece actively discusses the condition in a down-to-earth mixture of personal anecdotes and witty remarks; somewhere between a TED talk and a Saturday night stand-up comedy.

The informal tone by itself encourages neurotypical audience members to “be curious” about autism; and for those familiar or are autistic themselves, to realise that as much as being a hinderance to everyday life, neurodiversity can also be an ability to express oneself as an individual - hence the difference between “being autistic” and “having autism”, as Toney quotes himself.

These 60 minutes are not just all about movie quotes and Disney references (yes, think The Little Mermaid…), thanks to the skilfully structured writing and thoughtfully paced delivery - from getting a diagnosis to being pestered by misunderstood teachers and employers, the stereotypes of living as an autistic adult is thoroughly explored with a hint of apt criticism along the way.

More than 1 in 100 people are autistic in the UK, according to the National Autistic Society, and therefore it is no doubt an important time for the likes of Mine (or Unapologetically Autistic) to be promoted in an increasingly accepting arts landscape. As a neurodiverse art-maker myself, there are certainly relatable and often laugh-out-loud moments, but even for those with the least knowledge on the topic often filled with dilemma, the show offers quite a few laughs and more importantly, a warm invitation for audiences to reflect and celebrate how one can indeed be unapologetically autistic.

Mine (or Unapologetically Autistic) plays at The Bridge House Theatre until 6th April. For tickets and more information, you can follow the link here.

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AD | gifted tickets in return for an honest review


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