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When Women Wee

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
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Debuting at last year's Edinburgh Fringe Festival, When Women Wee is a simple yet innovative new play analysing what women get up to in the toilet on a night out. Played by just five actresses each performing a multitude of different characters and personalities you can sense how much fun they are having simply in the knowledge that all of this is funny because it's true.

The set design is kept basic, being just two cubicles on one end and a large table that serves as two sinks on the other (in which much of the dialogue is carried out as the girls look into an imaginary mirror). In one scene a shy frumpy girl enters one of two cubicles and begins meticulously laying loo paper all around the rim of the toilet in order to sit down in comfort, but not before bunging a load in to prevent any splash...

In another two blonde bimbos talk about setting up a hair salon in Italy called "afro ditty" where "I can turn up to work as a different Greek goddess each day, right". Another sees a party animal encourage her more straight-laced friend to try some MDMA for the first time; the consequences are more hilarious than you could possibly imagine.

Aside from the re-emergence of several characters through the course of the night there is no central plot or narrative that drives the play, which rather serves as a window into brief sequences of oestrogen-only privacy during an otherwise very, very wasted night. It's like being the fly on the ladies' toilet wall, an insight that male curiosity has sought to satiate since time immemorial.

There's a slight fear after the first couple of scenes that it will go down a garish, stereotyped path but as the play runs its course the charm is undeniable, spurned on by some phenomenal character acting. As some characters reappear you develop a fondness for them as their stories unfold. This ultimately boils down to the fact that there's not an unsympathetic character among them - there's an innocence there, somewhere, that forces you to like them.

Perhaps the possibility of a sequel - When Men Wee - could, if written as well as this, offer up as many laughs?

- Will Stone


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