Saturday, January 28

Almost Adult – Gilded Balloon Patter Hoose

Actor and creator Anne-Tilley combines comedy and drama as her character Hope tackles both coming-of-age issues as well as the more serious ones that unfortunately confront women in particular. Hope thinks she’s escaped the north of England for the bright lights of London, only to find the capital, and adulthood come with their own challenges.

Though well-meant, timely and heartfelt, the uncomfortable nature of these issues and Anne-Tilley’s natural strengths as a performer make the more dramatic parts of the show much more successful than the comedy ones.

Though the two stars given here might suggest there is more that doesn’t work than there is, that very much isn’t the case, as it’s more a question of imbalance. Had comedy been more the icing than the raison d’etre, Anne-Tilley would have had something truly personal and memorable. However, the current balance dilutes both, leaving a show that packs some punch in the second half but neither builds much comedic nor dramatic impetus before it.

By no means unfunny, by focussing on the comedy the show becomes, like an almost adult, not quite sure what it wants to be. At times amusing and at others angering, sad and uncomfortable, Almost Adult is by no means a failure, but its intriguing mix of elements sit uneasily together, never quite coalescing.

Almost Adult plays until August 28th (not 17th) at Gilded Balloon Patter Hoose, and tickets can be found at

Reviewer: Oliver Giggins

Reviewed: 8th August 2022

North West End UK Rating: ★★