See it if you like one-woman shows, minimal staging, gripping performances, & plays about reasserting one's identity against horrific obstacles.
Don't see it if the subject matter is too painful/triggery (the show takes a hard look at protag's experience of child abuse, violence, rape, suicide/death)
See it if You like poetic dialogue, and are ready for an intense experience delivered by one brilliant actress, and you like female-centric themes.
Don't see it if You don't enjoy avant garde, edgy theatre and have a hard time following poetic license, or you need lots of action and plot.
See it if You like immersive story-telling where every little mannerism pulls you into its world. If you like avant-garde, this is definitely for you.
Don't see it if You're confused by one person playing several characters and are sensitive to the subject of rape.
See it if You like one-person shows, multiple characters, fast paced dialogue
Don't see it if you are sensitive to sexual subject matter and rape
"And by the end of a timeless 80 minutes, you’ll have grasped the dimensions of an entire individual life, in all its confused clarity. This uncanny act of materialization is the more remarkable in that it is also an improbable act of translation, from what would seem to be uncompromisingly literary material...Ms. Duffin is tireless, passionate and exact in her performance...Every image has emotional heft and specificity...Make no mistake, it leaves an indelible mark on the memory."
"Aoife Duffin gives an intense, spirited and valiant performance in the interminable 'A Girl is a Half-formed Thing'...Though she is commanding, the nature of the material ultimately renders her performance and the overall experience of the play as wearying. She goes from one painful vignette to another while acting a succession of characters often rapid-fire. Due to the obtuse writing, this panorama often lacks clarity. Not much of it is memorable or makes much impact."
"To say that Duffin’s performance is a tour de force may not be doing the actress justice...Perfectly adapted for the stage by director Annie Ryan...While it’s true that 'Girl' may not be everyone’s cup of tea, the play’s importance can’t be underestimated–it has a lot to say and a lot that needs to be heard...Theater for those willing to be challenged. And then there’s Aofie Duffin, whose titanic talent and fiercely honest portrayal of the girl is nothing less than magnificent."
“Words, their syntax and sound, provide the blood flow of the play, but it is Duffin, in a pin-drop portrayal of a damaged but smart individualist, that sustains its pulse; so too the mix of traditional, pitiful, vicious and funny characters in her midst, all of whom Duffin seamlessly transforms into….For those who wish to see something truly extraordinary, albeit complex and emotionally demanding, ‘A Girl’ should not be missed.”
"It’s been rightly hailed as a tour de force performance since the show’s premiere...The takeaway from this adaptation, of course, is all Duffin, whose portrayals reveal an admirably sensitive reading of the characters...Duffin’s performance taps that mystic quality of ancient ritual, where the living and the dead, the present and absent, the visible and the invisible walk and talk as one."
"McBride's text is not stage text. Delivered aloud, it loses its mystery. We don't hear the text's misspellings or Joycean jabberwocky, so we focus instead on the girl's short life, a series of grim revelations. Ryan and her performer, Aoife Duffin, are intent on keeping things understandable...McBride's trick was to disorient us so thoroughly that we believed—against all the evidence—that the narrator might rise above her childhood. Why snuff out even that little hope?"
"Duffin does not falter, swapping between the voices with skill and humour. It is the scathing honesty of her caricatures that makes us laugh…There is no respite in this taut and expertly paced production, save the humour, and even that fades away into utter bleakness. Duffin left the stage visibly broken, and it is no wonder. She lives the girl’s story night after night so that audiences are forced to confront how terrible her story really is. And this is terribly important."
"A Joycean storm of words that doesn’t so much possess a narrative as hurl out a barrage of imagery so searingly that the story is blasted into your cerebellum, even if only half the words really make sense. Of course, you can’t have a tour de force monologue without a tour de force performance, and it’s impossible to imagine it without Duffin riding its lightning...It’s difficult to shake the sense that it’s all a bit much...But ultimately this ferocious, gorgeous show transcends mere story."