Review: Yerma, NT Live and Young Vic

Hoooooooolllllly moly. Well everyone already said it. But here I am. Here to say it all again.

Billie Piper is OUTSTANDING. Like. Beyond words incredible.

She plays a woman who wants to have a child.

She plays a woman who moves into a fancy house with her soonish to be husband who travels a lot.

She wants a child.

She plays a woman who sort of hates babies but really wants a child.

She’s a blogger and a confessor and a friend.


Like, really wants one.

And she had an abortion before. Which makes it even worse.

(Why don’t we talk about abortions more? So many women have had or will have one. It effects women.)

Brendan Cowell (John) and Billie Piper (Her) in Yerma at the Young Vic. Photo by Johan Persson

She’d even get with her ex to have one.

She’ll even cry out to God with potential apologies. (Have I done anything to offend you?)

She’s encaged in a glass box.

Her voices reverberates. She can’t get out of her own head.

Sick hits the wall. She’s broken the box. But she’s broken herself too. Or the world broke her. Nature. Life. IT ALL.

Simon Stone scripting of Lorca’s story is INCREDIBLE. And he envelops his cast in ridiculous confidence.

Modern intonation – perfect. Interruptions – like stream of consciousness dream inducing struggle to grasp it angels. Jokes – hilarious.

(Sorry, theatre buddy, about my too loud laugh.)

BUT. It is ALL about a woman who just wants a kid. Even if she says, right at the start, she doesn’t want to be defined by her reproductive system. Those words.

And yet.

That’s literally the whole play.

Oh well. Yerma won’t leave me for a very long time. Unfortunately, it has already left us – and it’s over at the Young Vic.

Photos: Johan Persson