Gluttony – The Bally, Thu 3 Mar
Juliette Burton: Look At Me will be one of the most important shows you see at the Fringe this year, a reflection on identity, image and representation. While Burton tells plenty of jokes and treats her subject with whimsy she also has an important message to share: how to find self-worth in a world trying to tear you down. Her bubbly personality and frenzied energy filled the stage from her opening monologue.
The production takes the form of a fashion magazine, and begins with a time-lapse video of Juliette’s photograph being photo-shopped: teeth whitened, waist cinched, arms thinned. We most likely have seen this before, and think we know where this is going: the power of the media to manipulate our desires and what we perceive as beauty is created by airbrushing and colour changes, to often detrimental effect. However, Juliette delves further into the potential consequences by telling a story about her struggles with her weight and identity.
I admired her honesty as she spoke about her battles with anorexia, then compulsive overeating. Sometimes it is not enough to tell someone “you need to be more self-confident” or “who cares what other people think”. To help her find her self-armour it needs to come from someone who has fought the battle before, and still continues to fight it.
Burton’s show continues with her adopting different identities in order to understand where confidence and self-worth comes from. Her costumes include a man, a seventy-year-old lady and a woman dressed in a hijab. While this could have verged into the territory of an Oprah-exposé, the method in which Juliette approached the subject was honest and nuanced.
Ultimately Juliette Burton tackles a dark subject with humour and grace, presenting one of the most powerful messages you will hear at The Fringe this year.
Juliette Burton: Look At Me continues at Gluttony – The Bally from 6.15pm until Mon 14 Mar.
Book at FringeTIX on 1300 621 255 or adelaidefringe.com.au. Click HERE to purchase your tickets.