The Angelica Complex is a dark yet often comedic voyage through the challenges of modern motherhood and post natal depression.
They say it takes a village to raise a child but what happens in the absence of a village? This is the story of new mother trying to navigate the contemporary world where we have lost the villages, the communities, the women’s stories. Where social media is taking over as the means of connection adding to the pressure to be perfect. Angelica finds herself on a ‘forced retreat’ – a landscape that is at once, both a literal and metaphorical space. She invites audiences to share her revelatory journey as she struggles for the survival of her self and her baby through those first few months of motherhood, from isolation to sleep deprivation to joy to the absence of red lipstick to dancing around the lounge room, to trying to not kill the baby or herself.
The Angelica Complex premiered at Kings Cross Theatre as part of the Invisible Circus Season November 2016.
“Sunny Grace’s The Angelica Complex is one of the voices we need if our theatrical culture can claim to be truly diverse. This is a powerful tale presented with both humour and pathos. Director Priscilla Jackman uses the traverse stage to full effect. Sometimes it’s a theatrical space for an individual woman’s intimate sharing of her joys and desperate challenges. At other times it becomes a symbol of a social space offering no escape from the gaze that sees only the role and never the person.”
– Paul Gilchrist, Theatre Red. Nov 16 2016
“The thriller aspect of the text was also clever…one is pulled into her story not just her emotions. I was compelled to concentrate because of the mystery engendered by the writing…”
– Judith Greenaway, Sydney Arts Guide. November 10th, 2016
“Angelica is played by Kym Vercoe, an actor full of energy, magnetism and acuity. Under Priscilla Jackman’s direction, Vercoe delivers an astonishing performance rich with insight and emotion. The show’s rhythms shift dynamically and beautifully through the duration… Sophisticated projections by Velinda Wardell are introduced judiciously to add texture, and to inspire our imaginations. It is an involving production that speaks carefully and clearly to its audience.”
– Suzy Wrong, Sydney Theatre Reviews: Suzy Goes See
“Who would have thunk it? An opera singer opening a show at the Kings Cross Hotel? It is one of the marvellous conceits and inventions of The Angelica Complex, a thrilling theatrical voyage into pregnancy, post-partum and parenting.”
– Richard Cotter, Aus Stage
“Angelica’s predicament is complex. In the course of an hour, we see how she is entangled in a web of issues connected with societal sexism, declining personal agency and self-image. Post-natal depression and loneliness play a part, too, as Angelica finds her life consumed by the unrelenting animal demands of an infant. The tone is heightened-real, verging on the poetic.”
– Jason Blake, The Sydney Morning Herald