Adelaide Fringe Review: Build a Rocket
Review – Geoff Jenke
Yasmin (performed by Serena Manteghi) is a bright 16-year-old whose life is turned upside down when she becomes pregnant with her son, Jack, after a wild night out with the girls. (and an even wilder night with DJ Danny). She is abandoned by her mother and the father of the child, Yasmin faces one of life’s great challenges completely alone.
Build a Rocket is a powerful, funny and uplifting one-woman show which was written by Christopher York. Serena brilliantly portrays the 16-year-old girl as well as the older version of Yasmin with ease. As a 16-year-old, it is a life of “out with the girls”, comparing clothes and boys, but once she has a child it is sleepless nights and hardship, trying to make every dollar count. The play has the most graphic child birth scene I have ever seen acted out in real life.
As the show goes on, the years quicken. However, the final scene is just too long. It is meant to be suspenseful, but we, the audience, have already guessed the result. At 80 minutes, the play is probably 10 minutes too long. A small quibble, I accept.
The story enclosed within the play could take place in any city in the world. Perhaps take the teenagers in your family along for a lesson about life. If it doesn’t make them think about their future actions, they will at least be swept along by Serena’s dazzling performance.
Holden Street Theatres Feb 12 – March 17.