This production is a Stage Must-See

The Shit/La Merda


Theatre Reviewed by Lauren Paxman

I don't generally have much time for actors who feel the need to take their clothes off. But unforgettable one-hander The Shit/La Merda is a show in which nakedness is not only justified but necessary.

This compelling first instalment of Christian Ceresoli's Disgust Decalogue is split into three parts – The Thighs, The Dick and The Fame – just to remind us that we're watching a satire.

"You've got to have a lot of courage," Ceresoli's script begins. And it doesn't take long to work out that the strength the satire is trying to find in its audience is the courage to stand up to corruption in the Italian political system.

Actress Silvia Gallerano's exposed vulnerability is heightened by her constantly reminding the audience that she is short and has disproportionately large thighs. But her character is turning to TV – that famous Berlusconi stronghold – to give herself the confidence she craves, although she knows it will take lots of bunga bunga parties to rise to the top. "Even if something disgusts you, you can still get used to it."

Gallerano's visceral performance will stay with you for years. The script conveys the political sentiment so clearly – especially drumming it in right at the end – that you'll leave feeling Italy's anger in your bones.

Published online
Review by
Lauren Paxman
Published in The Stage Newspaper on
Produced by
Silvia Gallerano, Cristian Ceresoli
Cristian Ceresoli
Running time
1 hour
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