When Amy was four, her father jumped in front of a train. She has always been and feeling the odd one out; the one laughed at; the one excluded. All these experiences and half memories colour her adult life. She fears about her mental health, on the other hand she’s heard that speaking about it can help.
One Under is a solo performance, which uses storytelling, treatment models and live game play to demonstrate how talking can change our preconceptions and provide a safety valve for our thoughts.
Amy Fleming was sweet and vulnerable in her performance and she explained expertly the physiology and genetics of mental illness as well as the effect of environmental factors. She handled well the “stick or swap” game with the participation of the audience.
But despite the interesting and poignant concept; despite the direct involvement of the audience that added spice and unpredictability; and despite the best efforts of Amy the performance was just not coming together. It felt disjointed, lacking coherence. I think it is a great concept that needs vigorous reworking. Mental illness, even the potential of one, still carries stigma and still people feel unsure how to handle it.