Brian Butler August 13, 2018

In this multi-gender knock about show, Katie Reddin Clancy seeks to confuse, amuse, explore and generally mix up our perceptions of men and women.

OPENING the show as a bouncy unselfish-conscious theatre manager with clipboard and permanent grin, Sheryl tells us that the famous double act Alfie and Grace are no more.

In fact Alfie and Grace are a double act made up of three characters, all played by one person. Confused? Told you so.

Alfie and Grace are highly successful lesbian comedians, we are told. Grace tragically dies in a highly suspect moped accident, leaving Alfie to recreate himself. But not so fast. Alfie is of course not a man, though his cheeky chippy Cockney chavviness are quite endearingly portrayed by Katie.

Enter Zora, Alfie’s new woman. She is nervous and under-rehearsed but belts out a song or two in a passable stand-up slot.

All the joke are gender-related of course. And Katie in her various personae hits out at girly stereotypes – Barbi, Snow White, Cinderella and a Kardashian or two.

BUT in an age where 58 genders have been classified, she tells us “what we agree to is what’s acceptable.” And she adds: “We’re all born naked; the rest is just drag”.

Zora admits she’s caught in the middle  – and so are we. “Being true to yourself” is what counts and Katie is not giving us the answers – just saying we need to explore, to open up, be accepting – and if not at all possible be funny too.

It’s a barn-storming whirlwind performance by Katie, whose talent to create so many different characters is amazing. Not just Alfie and co but Audrey the 19th century theatre ghost and Anna the viscous money grabbing theatrical agent. Tremendous hour of thought-provoking fun.

Grace runs at the Gilded Ballroom, Edinburgh throughout August.

Review by Brian Butler