An Adolescent Cabaret - Madilynn Mansur
Reviewed By Ethan Platt
In “An Adolescent Cabaret”, a one-woman cabaret written and performed by Madilynn Mansur, the audience has the pleasure of getting a look inside the neurodivergent mind of a late millennial who has always felt different from her peers. In the production about coming of age and realizing what makes you different makes you strong, Madilynn reminisces about the events that helped her reclaim the pride and confidence she always felt lacking from ages 6-12. From Cheetah Girls to Britney Spears, clown make-up to fake blood, and intrusive thoughts to letters from yourself, this production keeps the audience guessing whether the next piece will make them laugh, cry, or cheer for this young adult’s retrospective story. Anyone who was not the most popular, good looking, or successful in school will be undoubtedly able to connect to this heart-warming story.
Through the use of recorded interviews of her friends and family, Mansur is able to maintain enjoyable pacing without overwhelming the audience with her nostalgic song selections, enthusiastic dance, and theatrical movement. Her representation of herself within these awkward and formative years of life is beyond realistic. At multiple times the audience found itself laughing, not just from Mansur’s impeccable wit, but also from her relatable awkwardness with which everyone can relate.
This fever-dream of a cabaret about a disillusioned adult reminiscing about her less than perfect childhood sincerely discusses difficult problems that affect so many us through elementary and middle school. This “adolescent” production is anything but juvenile in its eclectic presentation. Anyone who does not make time to spend an hour inside of this remarkable young adult’s mind will surely be regretful to miss this heart-warming and tear evoking spectacle.