Depression is no laughing matter – or so they say. 0 Days Without Crying, which is currently running at Landor_Space, is many ways a taboo-breaking piece of theatre.
Written and performed by Caterina Incisa, it focuses on Jess – a 20-something woman who finds much in her life to be unhappy about. There’s her career, her body, her love life… but at the root of it all is the death of her mother, who passed away when she was 16.
Jess is only too aware about her own feelings and how her life looks like from the outside. But that doesn’t stop her making wry comments about herself or the people she meets. The play subtly taps into the disatisfaction of life that most people face and all the ‘fixes’ people utilise – self-help books, healthy diets, prescription drugs – but the underlying reasons aren’t necessarily addressed.
Avoiding didacticism, Incisa’s deftly addresses these issues with humour and insight, including ambivalence towards seeing one’s social circle who may have no way of relating to you or are judgmental about others over the most superficial things.
The play isn’t afraid to go into some dark, heartfelt places, including a heart-to-heart with one’s dying mother. But incidents like these are balanced out with observations about the absurdities of life – by what people say, what we think in stressful situations and the bizarre circumstances we find ourselves in.
I found 0 Days Without Crying to be refreshing and at times hilarious, a tragicomedy with a distincting voice and for all its introspection, a play that’s ready to embrace life – warts and all.
© Michael Davis 2018
0 Days Without Crying runs at Landor Space until 11th April.