If you’re looking for a unique, moving, and uplifting Fringe experience, then We Live By The Sea is the show for you.
Katy, a fifteen-year-old girl who is on the autism spectrum, is cared for by her elder sister, Hannah. Her only friend is Paul Williams, her imaginary dog, the only thing that manages to calm her down after her father’s death a year earlier. However, all that changes with the arrival of Ryan, a friend of the girls’ neighbour, who finds Katy refreshing and inspiring. Each of the characters grow, change, and see life a little more clearly after they are inspired by Katy’s everyday bravery in their own ways.
This simple yet moving story captivates from its musical beginning. The nuances of life with Autism are captured in creative and thought-provoking ways: sound is cleverly used to explore Katy’s sensory overload; lighting captures a range of emotions from fear, to bravery, to happiness; and clever projections tell a story within a story of the story of Katy, Hannah, Ryan, and Paul. Katy addresses the crowd directly, telling her stories within stories within stories. The structure of the show is particularly clever, with on-stage montages, YouTube videos, and vignettes such as “Katy’s Morning” capturing life with autism in an informative and emotional way.
The show has had sold-out runs in London, Edinburgh, and New York, and it’s easy to see why; with a clever, visceral, and uplifting script, incredible performances from the entire cast, and clever staging, We Live By The Sea received its standing ovation for a reason. Be sure to check it out before the Fringe ends.
Kryztoff rating: 5K