A one man show consisting of 90 minutes of monologue entitled Suicide Notes is a daunting prospect for any audience member, and a momentous task for a performer to undertake - let alone do well and keep the audience interested. Christopher Brett Bailey does just this, and takes the audience on a whirlwind journey through stories of sex, death and everything in between. Brett makes you laugh one moment then turn your judgemental eye inwards the next, and keeps the audience guessing as to which path we will venture down next, weaving between a palpable sense of awkwardness in the room and then being brought back together through conversational breaks and shared laughter between audience and performer.
Early in the performance, Brett warns the audience that the collected works he has to share lasts well over six hours, and his decision to share different parts of this in each performance is a savvy choice; the audience leave wanting more, and no doubt will be back on other nights to hear the rest, or purchase the book to read Brett’s other the stories.
For this reviewer, the highlights of the piece are the very short stories that intersperse the longer sections. These are hilarious and shocking and leave the audience laughing – whilst surreptitiously checking around that they aren’t alone. No matter how funny or obscene the language is, the gravity of the topics presented in this show cannot be laughed away. Brett calls into focus the impact humans have on nature, what our attitudes towards having children really reveals about us and flips the discourse surrounding suicide on its head – or at least, that’s what this show looked out, you’ll have to come back another time to hear the rest.
Written by @EmmaLamond23