Edinburgh reviews: Juana in a Million

Written for The Stage

Juana in a Million

You will leave Juana in a Million feeling shell-shocked and not a little angry. This emotionally wrought tale of South American immigrant Juana is told with utter conviction and beautiful flair by Vicky Araico Casas.

After coming to the UK to find freedom, all Juana finds is an isolating language barrier, exploitation and a system built to keep this bright girl down.

A powerful mixture of storytelling and dance, the texturing of this solo show keeps you glued to the stage. With the help of Adam Pleeth’s stunning live musical accompaniment, manual labour is transformed into hypnotic movement sequences.

Nir Paldi, co-artistic director of Ad Infinitum, has fine-tuned Araico Casas’ passionate performance so that all the characters – villains or friends – are portrayed with the lightest of touch. Betrayals spring out of the happiest of scenarios. I defy you to leave this show without a tear in your eye.

Araico Casas and Paldi worked closely with the Latin American Women’s Rights Service to make Juana in a Million as faithful to the truth as possible, and each word is ingrained with integrity. The plight of South American women is one that vitally needs to be raised, and Juana in a Million is a dazzling way to do it.

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