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Where's Your Mama Gone? (Carriageworks - Leeds)

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
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Beginning with the familiar story of a serial killer terrorising Yorkshire in the 1970’s, Where’s Your Mama Gone? moves swiftly on to focus on Steve and Carol, siblings whose mother has been murdered.

These broken characters move between care home and prison, through doomed relationships and unspeakable personal torment as they struggle just to survive against the onslaught of overwhelming tragedy.

Steve searches for answers, desperate to make sense out of his grief, culminating in a powerful confrontation with the man who killed his mother. Carol buries the pain in a haze of drink and drugs which leave her vulnerable to the abuse experienced not only by her mother but of too many other women before her.

These key central performances don’t always convey the depth and subtlety of pain that such an awful tragedy must invoke. Often relying on shouted rage but rarely do we see deeper to the silent torment which will never leave them.

Covering vast ground the pace remains brisk and uncluttered. So complex are the issues, all the play can really do is raise the questions but they are presented with such focus that these questions stay with you long after the play has finished.


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