An hour of laughs, relatable anecdotes if you are a parent and if not, then many moments of self-reflection.
The Howling Owl in Vaughan Place is a great venue and after being informed that the performance was Sold Out, was ushered upstairs, drink in hand.
Jo Ghastly meets you in the foyer before you enter the room, greeting her audience which gave me the idea that audience participation was potentially going to be on the cards. It was also a wonderfully brave option for the performer especially when most are sitting backstage in final preparation before an opening night performance.
Jo Ghastly addresses what most parents believe they are or at least can be – A Cool Parent! Jo talks about how she has learnt to understand and successfully use today’s teenage lingo, body language, fashion, social cues and the proper use of social media. Now she has mastered this aspect of parenting, she is presenting seminars to impart this knowledge to those of us that clearly need help in this pursuit.
Jo covers many aspects, of how specifically Mums, dream of being seen by their teenage kids. She does this with a wonderfully dry delivery and sometimes the honesty that usually only plays out in our heads and not said out loud. No one would ever want other people to know how they really feel about their beloved children’s personalities, actions, and responses! Most of the show focuses on how parents, try as they might, just don’t land being cool to their children and makes fun of the many failed attempts of trying to be cool. The room is filled with laughter, understanding and squirming, knowing full well that most these examples of coolness have already been attempted.
Jo uses the classic seminar presentation formula, complete with all the PowerPoint whistles and gongs which adds to the entertainment and variety of the show.
As much as this show is about being “The Cool Mum’, it is not just for the mums. It is so relatable to mums and dads, grown children, and young people alike that I would recommend this show to anyone who just wants to have a good laugh over the chasm between parents and their children regardless of the age or generation.
There was only one thing that made it all just a little more uncomfortable than it already was for us ‘try hard parents’, and that was the seating. It was so jam packed with chairs, that as I went to sit down, I needed to apologise for sitting on the lap of the young person next to me. Yes, we want as many people as possible to attend Fringe shows but not to the point where people are intentionally sitting across two seats to obtain some personal space.
This show is well worth the ticket price, get along to see it before it closes on the weekend.