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Borderline - The Blue Room Theatre

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by Marisa Quinn-Haisu (subscribe)
My name is Marisa. I am a fiction writer, a blogger, and a freelance journalist.
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Evelyn shares their experiences living with mental illness
Borderline at The Blue Room Theatre
Image credit Tasha Faye Tong

Borderline was written by and stars Evelyn Snook. Snook is a Perth based performer, writer and trained dancer who graduated from the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) in 2018 with a Bachelor of Performing Arts. Snook is the leader of a performance group called Stumble, which was formed in 2018 with the goal of promoting mental health awareness and queer representation and encouraging local artists and creators who live with mental illness to tell their stories.

Borderline is the second performance produced by Stumble. The show is based on the original script of their first show, Dancing in the Driveway, which premiered at FRINGE WORLD in 2019. WeekendNotes writer Elysia Tsangarides called Dancing in the Driveway "An intimate piece of beautiful theatre" in her 2019 review which you can read by clicking here.

Borderline is a deeply personal show about Snook's personal experiences growing up and living with Borderline Personality Disorder. Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is a personality disorder that affects personal relationships, self-esteem and emotions. People diagnosed with BPD can experience a distorted sense of self, can struggle with feelings of emptiness and a fear of abandonment, can suffer detachment from reality and suicidal thoughts and can have a pattern of unstable relationships.

Snook takes the audience on a deeply personal exploration of their childhood and mental health struggles in Borderline. They treat the audience to a fantastic solo performance that is honest, energetic, emotional, raw and vulnerable. Snook shares stories and videos from their childhood and expresses themselves through dance, song, poetry, metaphors and puppets. Snook is accompanied on stage by singer and musician Be Gosper, who captivated the audience with their guitar playing and beautiful folk music.

I was really impressed with the set design, lighting and special effects used in Borderline. Snook describes living with mental illness is a lot like living in a world where the sky is covered in black plastic. It is suffocating and overwhelming and you struggle to find the light. When they described their feelings, we heard the sound of crumpling plastic, and an image was projected on the back wall that looked a lot like a camera moving over a black garbage bag. When Snook was feeling happier, we would see shadowy images displayed on the back wall of people dancing, embracing, and puppies running around and wagging their tails.

Borderline is currently showing at The Blue Room Theatre until Saturday, 31 July 2021. There are no shows scheduled for Sunday, 25 July 2021 and Monday, 26 July 2021. The show starts at 7pm each night and runs for 70 minutes. It is suitable for people 15 years and older. Ticket prices are $30 for full-price and $25 for concession. To secure your tickets for this show, please visit the Blue Room Theatre's website by following this link.
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*Marisa Quinn-Haisu was invited as a guest
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Why? Evelyn Snook gives a deeply personal performance in Borderline about their experiences growing up and living with mental illness.
When: Thursday, 22 July 2021 to Saturday, 31 July 2021.
Where: The Blue Room Theatre, 53 James Street, Northbridge WA
Cost: Full price $30, concession $25
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