The Soaking of Vera Shrimp

The Soaking of Vera Shrimp may seem at first like a fairly quirky premise. A one-woman play, it follows the eponymous Vera, a fourteen-year-old girl on the verge of adulthood who can feel different emotions when she touches raindrops. These emotions range from melancholy to rage, with Vera documenting each one in her journal. However, this metaphorical feeling of emotion is then overtaken by a notably unquirky, heart-rending story of Vera’s grief and how she copes with it.

We are able to get inside Vera’s head and end up carrying her attitude as we leave the theatre; that life is painful and emotions are confusing, but there’s always a light at the end of the tunnel.

The way that grief is portrayed throughout the production is innovative yet wonderfully simple. Grief is arguably one of the hardest emotions to convey in any art form as it is difficult to pin down and often contradictory. Yet by using a mixture of sound production, monologues and even audience participation, The Soaking of Vera Shrimp is largely successful. In other hands it could seem somewhat pretentious or kooky but Rosie Kellagher directs with such poise and tenderness that what could be gimmicky turns out to be often overwhelming emotional experiences for the audience.

Tessa Parr as Vera is outstanding, relishing the stage as the character. Throughout the show she is utterly charming and a complete joy to be around. However, don’t assume she’s just a bubble of positivity; as the show progresses Vera begins to crack, revealing her to be just as emotional and complicated as everyone else. There’s not one moment that you don’t believe Parr as this essentially confused yet wonderfully unique teenager.

What is most impressive is the show’s believability and truthfulness. Undoubtedly it has its quirks yet the emotions and layers of grief it is attempting to portray are crystal clear. We are able to get inside Vera’s head and end up carrying her attitude as we leave the theatre; that life is painful and emotions are confusing, but there’s always a light at the end of the tunnel. 

Reviews by Will Roberts

The Assembly Rooms

Immigrant Diaries: Sajeela Kershi and Guests

★★★★
Laughing Horse @ The Newsroom

Sajeela Kershi: Shallow Halal

★★★★
Assembly George Square Studios

Chris Dugdale: Sleightly Dishonest

★★★
Just the Tonic at The Mash House

Ally Houston: Shandy

★★
The Assembly Rooms

Tom Stade: You’re Welcome!

★★★★

Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now

Performances

Location

The Blurb

During an almighty rainstorm, 14-year-old Vera discovers she has a remarkable gift. She can read raindrops, each one having soaked up an emotion from those the water has come into contact with. But as her family disintegrates, Vera's extraordinary ability takes on a darker and more urgent significance. Part science lesson, part story-telling, this is a poignant and playful solo-show about love, grief and never giving up. 'Elegant, sweet, touching' (Audience Review). 'Funny, heart-breaking and really compelling' (Audience Review). Winner Live Theatre and Empty Space bursary award 2013.

Most Popular See More

Heathers The Musical

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Pretty Woman: The Musical

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Mamma Mia!

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Hairspray

From £21.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Tina - The Tina Turner Musical

From £13.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat

From £13.00

More Info

Find Tickets