Hole reviews, Ellie Kendrick’s debut play – Royal Court Theatre ★★★

Ellie Kendrick’s debut play Hole has opened to solid reviews at the Royal Court Theatre in London.

Directed by Helen Goalen and Abbi Greenland (from the award-winning company RASHDASH), Kendrick’s fiery feminist show
attempts to ask how power is created through the use of word, music and movement in equal parts.

Hole is scheduled to run until 12 January 2019 at the Royal Court Theatre, London.

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Read a round-up of reviews below.

Average Critics Rating

Hole reviews

The Guardian

‘Ellie Kendrick livens up her inventive debut with astrophysics and ancient Greek myth – but it could use more concrete argument’

‘It is odd, original, inventively staged by Helen Goalen and Abbi Greenland from RashDash, and vigorously performed by its six-strong cast. But in its fury, it leaves little room for doubt, argument or internal challenge.’

‘What I craved was some more concrete notion as to how women, in practice, are to revolutionise and reshape the future.’

Michael Billington, The Guardian
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The Times

‘This hour-long explosion of the deeply felt meets the intellectually playful meets performance-art spectacle starts and ends with the same line: “I need you to listen.”’

‘We get the idea, but then what do we get? This raging feminist cabaret gets tiresome all too soon'

Dominic Maxwell, The Times
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The Evening Standard

‘The show doesn’t develop sufficiently from its initial premise, although it continues to burn with rage’

‘The message of this piece of cabaret-cum-performance art is stark and simple even if, when couched in the language of physics, it becomes dense and impenetrable.

It is this: women have decided that it is long overdue time to take up space and raise their voices and nothing, not even a black hole, is going to stop them.

Although it is impossible to fault the gender politics, Ellie Kendrick’s work is not always an easy watch, as it slides from fierce feminism to far harder-to-follow physics.’

Fiona Mountford, The Evening Standard
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‘Ellie Kendrick’s fiery feminist cabaret feels slightly overshadowed by its directors, RashDash’

‘Generically speaking, we’re not exactly talking about a play: maybe ‘feminist cabaret’ would be a more accurate description. Certainly, it’s a pretty free-form type of night, which unfolds in a fizzbang of skits, songs and elaborate visual set-pieces rather than anything resembling a plot. And it’s powered by a terrific and gloriously frazzled group of female performers who tag-team their way through the scenarios presented with hurtling aplomb.‘

Andrzej Lukowski, TimeOut
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The Telegraph

‘I wish I liked Hole more than I did’

‘Kendrick’s script not only has the choric feel of ancient Greek drama, it invokes the murderous femininity of Agave and her followers in the Bacchae and the winged Furies in the Oresteia.’

‘Directed with a rough-and-ready muscularity by semi-improv theatre collective RashDash, it also feels like a theatrical provocation – a performance-art piece that, by asserting the primacy of raw feeling, seems to directly challenge, if not even critique, the Royal Court’s long tradition of kitchen sink theatre.’

‘But there is also a persistent and fatal whiff of indulgence, and that distinct tang of self- righteousness that is ultimately always excluding rather than inclusive.’

Claire Allfree, The Telegraph
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The Stage

‘Ellie Kendrick’s flawed but ferocious debut play reverberates with feminist rage’

‘Rage and frustration blaze throughout this play – but so does hope. It’s a riotous, ragged, wild thing with the glimmer of magnificence among its flailing and its flaws.’

Sam Marlowe, The Stage
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