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Ane City, Assembly Roxy Downstairs – Review

There are three things you should know about Ane City.  One, she does a lot of lists of three. Two, she swears a lot so maybe don’t take your gran. Three, it's a damn great show. Written and performed by Taylor Dyson, it follows our 20-year-old aspiring poet, Tay. On returning to her hometown of Dundee, having finished the second year of her English Lit degree in Glasgow, she plans a wild night out to catch up with those friends and younger sister she left at home whilst she ventured off into the bigger world. It’s a tale of…

Summary

Rating

Excellent

Taylor Dyson delivers up another fine spoken word performance that adds to the already rich vein of the genre that Scotland seems to have

User Rating: 4.85 ( 1 votes)

There are three things you should know about Ane City.  One, she does a lot of lists of three. Two, she swears a lot so maybe don’t take your gran. Three, it’s a damn great show.

Written and performed by Taylor Dyson, it follows our 20-year-old aspiring poet, Tay. On returning to her hometown of Dundee, having finished the second year of her English Lit degree in Glasgow, she plans a wild night out to catch up with those friends and younger sister she left at home whilst she ventured off into the bigger world. It’s a tale of seeing the world around you moving on even as so much never changes, of feeling like an outsider in a place you once called home, of being scared at what the rest of your life might hold. It is these things and so much more. It doesn’t offer up any great answers, but it does help you understand you are not alone in feeling alone sometimes.

Dyson is a fine wordsmith, ably creating scenes in your mind with just her words as they roll over her tongue in thick Dundonian accent; there are times the accent is so thick it’s a struggle for a non-native to catch every word, but just the sound of her voice is enough to carry those moments. Whilst the hour-long show consists of only Dyson’s voice, she mixes things up with little asides; her cameo as Liza Minnelli is a gem.

And as Dyson struts around the stage, taking us through the city she calls home, sitting quietly behind her is Calum Kelly, who, as well as providing the guitar to add music to her words, also directed the show. He sits so still it would be easy to miss him, especially given the power of Dyson’s performance, demanding you watch and listen to her. But without his contribution, Dyson’s words may not roll so eloquently.  

There are three more things you need to know about Ane City before you finish reading. One, it contains one rather surreal sex scene. Two, there is a great parody of Abba midway through that shows the power of the performer. Three, and most important of all, Taylor Dyson is quite simply another fine example of the rich vein of Scottish spoken word performers that make me regret not living in this fine country so I can hear more of them.

Written by: Taylor Dyson
Directed by: Calum Kelly
Produced by: Elfie Picket
Booking link: https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/ane-city
Booking until: 26 August 2019

About Rob Warren

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Rob accidently ended up working in social housing as a temporary thing. That was ten years ago and hasn't got around to leaving just yet as it fits nicely in with his political views of the world. Started out writing music reviews. Spent many a happy night propping up bars in the back rooms of London's dodgiest music venues. Whilst he is still looking out for the next great band, Rob eventually got into theatre as you get to sit down rather than stand. Theatre was also kinder on the hearing, which had never recovered fully from the last Primal Scream gig he attended. Like his work, Rob tends to like his plays a little social leaning, which probably explains why he struggles to find people to go with him half the time.