Show: Y’MAM: Young Man’s Angry Movements
Location: Everyman Theatre, Liverpool
Dates: Wednesday June 16-Saturday June 26 2021
Running Time: 85 Minutes
Age Rating: 18+
Performer: Luke Jerdy
Production Company: Everyman Theatre
Writer: Luke Jerdy
Director: Adam Welsh
Our latest theatre review is for Y’MAM: Young Man’s Angry Movements at Liverpool‘s Everyman Theatre. The show runs from Wednesday June 16 to Saturday June 26 2021. And the show comes on the heels o great acclaim from a previous trial run in February 2020. So, let’s take a look at Y’MAM: Young Man’s Angry Movements!
Y’MAM: Young Man’s Angry Movements
Luke Jerdy tells the story of Majid Mehdizadeh. But it quickly becomes apparent that this is a story of struggle, trouble, conflict and sadness. Indeed, Luke travels through various hot-points in Majid’s life that would shape the man he would sometimes become. And I say “sometimes” because the influence of alcohol would play a key role in most hot-points. From a simple schoolyard fight, the incidents take on greater severity as Majid grows into a young adult. And while each scenario becomes more serious, Majid seemingly believes that he becomes more and more invincible. However, as intermittent counselling sessions prove, Majid is a soul of torture trying to find the root cause of his problems.
Along the way, Majid displays his skills as a freestyle rapper, spitting lyrics with both speed and significance. Chief among them is this line, one that I want readers to think about for a moment before reading on. “There has to be an intro to the problem, or the problem wouldn’t exist.” And as the show progresses, we begin to learn what the intro to Majid’s problems are. And crucially, we also learn about his journey to tackle them.
But there are light moments too. For instance, the star performer drops the Majid character at one point and becomes Luke Jerdy. And he does so with a recollection of an amusing incident from the Everyman Theatre back in 2014. This provides light relief at a crucial stage of the performance. But it also demonstrates the difference between Luke and Majid, and this plays a role in the final scenes of the production.
To me, Y’MAM: Young Man’s Angry Movements was thoroughly gripping from start to finish. The one-man aspect, the frantic movement and the continuous dialogue ensure our gaze never leaves Jerdy. And he puts on an unbelievable performance as he covers every emotion and every genre imaginable. Because we get gasps, nervous giggles, intense stares, belly-laughs and unwashable tears throughout the 85-minute duration. Jerdy’s versatility as an actor is on full display, showcasing a gritty realism that is occasionally unnerving but always compelling.
What’s more, we learn the significance of Majid. I won’t spoil it here, but needless to say that, once the truth unravels, everything makes sense. And it also makes this show that much more authentic. At times, it’s hard to separate Jerdy from Mehdizadeh, and we’re wondering what is real and what is fictional. When a performance is able to achieve this, you know that it’s fulfilling its goals brilliantly. And this is even more impressive when it’s in front of an intimate audience due to Coronavirus restrictions. (I should note here that the Everyman Theatre would provide a fabulous set-up with separate circular dinner tables and golden lights. All of which would enhance the viewing experience to not only ensure safety but also comfort and even prestige.)
I must also note a crucial layer to this show, which harks back to the earlier quote. That being, the focus on how men can struggle to control their mental health. And even more significantly, how men often feel unable to express their true emotions when they are struggling. This is vital for everybody to be aware of, especially when Majid brings up friends whose lives are already over. The happy ending to this show is reassurance for anyone in attendance who is struggling or who knows of anyone struggling. But it also acts as an education for those who may see the symptoms without putting two and two together. As a student of mental health myself, this aspect would have great significance to me.
Y’MAM: Young Man’s Angry Movements is absolutely superb. Luke Jerdy’s performance is on another level, and a testament to his skills as an actor. And I hope to see this show touring the UK once theatres are able to reopen properly. But I also believe this show is absolutely essential for all young males, and females too for that matter. For the discussion of mental health is a necessity whether attendees believe they are struggling or not. So, if Y’MAM: Young Man’s Angry Movements comes to a theatre near you, I highly recommend that you see it. As a matter of fact, I insist upon it.
Target Audience: 18+
Content: Very Strong Language, Implied Strong Violence, Infrequent Substance References & Suicide Themes
Overall Rating: 10/10 – Perfect
Y’MAM: Young Man’s Angry Movements Further Links
Y’MAM: Young Man’s Angry Movements runs at the Everyman Theatre from Wednesday June 16 to Saturday June 26 2021. So, to purchase tickets, please click here.
Read about the work of CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably) to assist males struggling with mental health by clicking here.
To find out more information about this show, click here.
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