Layla's Room Performance Review

Layla’s Room follows the struggles of a young girl desperately trying to find herself in a world where she is pressured to blend in. The story explores the harsh reality of sexual harassment and the effect it has on friendships and family relationships. Although the production uses humour and slang to capture the essence of teenagers, it shares a deeper message about the ‘everyday sexism’ young women encounter and the difficulty they face in attempting to make others believe them.

The eye-opening play consists of Layla (Shanice Sewell) packing up her room and confiding in the audience in sharing her story – a story which drove her to depression. What started as name-calling from two boys at her school escalated into her being followed home and sexually assaulted in the street. The school does nothing in an attempt to keep the peace, while her classmates tell her that ‘boys will be boys’. The perpetrator, Joe (Alex Stedman), spreads rumours around the school which cause Layla to lose her best friend Monica (Emma White) and become ostracised by the rest of the school. Alone and vulnerable, Layla’s world shatters.

This award-winning play performed by the Theatre Centre shows the importance of self-confidence as well as doing what’s right, even if it means standing alone.

Hannah Saint

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