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We Live By The Sea - Adelaide Fringe 2017

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by Paula McManus (subscribe)
Photography obsessed writer and urban explorer. Lover of nature, art and long weekends. Adelaide, South Australia.
Event: -
It's A Lovely Thing
Raw emotions, heartfelt communications, friendships and the stories of those who live by the sea.

We Live By The Sea, set in a seaside town in the UK is one of the most powerful pieces of theatre I've ever been witness to.

We Live By The Sea Alex Brain actor
Alex Brain (Katy), We Live By The Sea (©paula mcmanus)

We entered the theatre and were asked by a young lady crouched on the floor "may I tap your shoes?" "Of course you can hon" was my reply. Three taps and we were taken to our seats. We had just met 'Katy', the main lead in the show who tells the story of life with Autism.

Katy's life is routine and rules. She wakes at the same time every day, has colour coded days of the week, will only drink a certain brand of juice, time in the shower is strict - exactly 5 plus 5 plus 5 because that's the rule and Sunday is her day to be brave because it's the day before she goes to school and school life can be cruel and hard for Katy.

This show is honest and 100% believable. It's full of tenderness and love and acceptance. It's incredible and I simply don't have enough words in my vocabulary to explain how moved I was while watching it. I regretted not taking tissues with me but I was not the only person in the audience to have tears rolling down their face and into their laps. It's that kind of show.

We Live By The Sea
Lizzie Grace (Paul Williams), Alex Simonet (Hannah) and Alex Brain (Katy) ©paula mcmanus

The story slowly unravels and we get an understanding of how life is for Katy and her sister Hannah. Hannah is her sister's full-time carer at only 18. Their parents both left them - their mother left on the day that Katy was diagnosed and their father went out one day on his boat and never came back.

Katy doesn't have many friends - her best friend is her imaginary dog Paul Williams, who shares a secret language with her and helps her deal with the moments that she finds difficult.

Both Katy and Hannah (and Paul) make a new friend in Ryan - a city boy and YouTuber who has a sea-change with his mother. For the first time in his life, Ryan knows the value of a true and honest friendship. He and Katy become dragon slayers.

With Ryan's coming, there's hope for all of them. They laugh, they dance and they eat fish fingers. It's a lovely thing.

We Live By The Sea
Lizzie Grace (Paul Williams) and Alex Brain (Katy) ©paula mcmanus

We Live By The Sea has come to Adelaide after sell-out seasons at the Edinburgh Festival, in London and in New York.

It was nominated for The Scotsman Fringe First Award at the Edinburgh Festival. The Times named it Pick of the Fringe and the New York Times named it one of the Top Theatre Moments in 2016. The live band who travel with the show, Wovoka Gentle, have just been offered a recording contract.

At the 2017 Adelaide Fringe Festival, this is the show you have to get yourself along to. It's outstanding.

We Live by the Sea is showing in The Black Forest venue at the Royal Croquet Club this Adelaide Fringe Festival and is presented by the Patch of Blue theatre company.

We Live By The Sea
We Live By The Sea (©paula mcmanus)

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Why? An outstanding theatre production - a must see this Fringe
When: everyday until 19th March. No shows on Mondays
Where: Royal Croquet Club
Cost: Prices start from $10
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