Reviewed by Rachael Sulaiman.
Cam Spence brings to the Fringe her one-woman show The Sunshine Clinic which features Janet Waitrose, a manic therapist, who invites the audience into her “Sunshine” Clinic. Although the mental health of the protagonist herself is questionable, Cam Spence’s comedy hour shines a light on mental health and group therapy.
Spence’s acting was impeccable, swapping between not two, but four characters, each with their own accents, costume, and flaws. The range of female characters was refreshing and the hour went by quickly, thanks to Spence’s ability to engage with her character acting.
The acting was done so well that it was difficult to laugh at the therapist Janet Waitrose, as over the course of the hour the audience almost became too attached to the heroine. The other characters played by Spence were definitely impressive, but the sheer number of them made it difficult to get attached to any.
Spence also used a clever screen trick where she would walk behind the screen and change character both in person and on the screen, like a magician’s quick change. The tech, however was either impressively smooth and almost unbelievable or slightly awkward when slightly off. Spence had good interactions with the audience, who were definitely on her side at the start, however with some unnecessary parts - there wasn’t much of a comedic gain from the life drawing.
Overall, the hour was a very interesting concept, however Spence seemed to spread herself a little too thin; in delving further into one character and focusing on her great acting skills the show could have been improved. That said, if you love a bit of Schadenfreude, hurry along to the Sunshine Clinic and meet Spence’s array of characters at the Pleasance Bunker Three.
Cam Spence: Sunshine Clinic runs at Pleasance Bunker Three at 16:30 until 25th August.