We are instantly intrigued by the three girls sitting in the dark, each giving a mysterious and panicked account of the situation that has led them to this point - a great way to foreshadow what was to come and keep the audience engaged.
Rachel Delooze was wonderful as the manipulative and spiteful Tamsin, and had some epic one-liners (which for censorship's sake I can't mention here!) that had the audience laughing profusely. A particular highlight was her fantastically awful audition for the role of Juliet in the school play and her consequent outrage at being cast as a servant with no lines.
As Kayla, Catherine Keats was hilariously airheaded, a loyal follower of Tamsin (totes!). Her character change from devoted admirer to scornful and bitter at Tamsin’s backstabbing was nicely done, and elicited real sympathy from the audience.
Billie, played by Leonie Carpenter was highly convincing as the nervous new girl, eager to impress teachers but desperately trying to be cool and fit in with her peers. Her darker side was occasionally revealed through cutting, pointed comments, hinting at there being something deeper to her character, and to the story.
Completing the cast, Benjamin Archer as Mr Holden was a good fit in his portrayal as the authoritative and no-nonsense teacher, bringing a good sense of realism to the play. His interaction with the three schoolgirls was done well, especially when berating them for not having done work – I’m sure we can all remember very similar situations from our own school days!
All played up very well to their stereotypical caricatures, embodying their personalities wholeheartedly and with great zest. All characters were relatable and it was great to revel in the comedy of the writing and the good interaction and natural chemistry between the actors.
Although the story itself was a little predictable and rather Mean Girls-esque, the plot twist at the end was certainly clever and made us suddenly reflect on all our preconceptions of innocent Billie. It would have been nice to see this go further and watch Billie transition fully into the figure we now know her to be.
If you're up for a night of light-hearted entertainment where you can sit back and get absorbed into the drama and fun of the catty squabbles and inane problems teenage girls have, this was definitely an enjoyable show!
Head Girl runs until 27th July at the Blue Orange Theatre.
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