REVIEW: Everything’s Going to be KO (Pleasance Courtyard) ★★★★

We are greeted by Cecilia, a lovely calming, soft voiced creature who runs us all through a series of tests; where there are no wrong nor right answers. As the tests continue it becomes clear that however calming and relaxed Cecelia seems, we are not relaxed about the questions and more importantly the answers.

And so begins Kaiya’s personal tale in overcoming her learning disabilities. Not diagnosed until her undergrad days at Oxford, it’s clear that Kaiya is anything but stupid or lazy or anything else that her high school teachers might suggest on her school report.

Kaiya self admittedly has a level of privilege that other people perhaps don’t and she’s very clear about illustrating that this project is about raising awareness for all the people who don’t get a diagnosis, who struggle, who can’t read, who don’t have supportive parents or have discovered those magical ‘unicorn’ teachers that really understand their students’ individual needs. It’s a sad indictment when an incredibly intelligent woman has to struggle with something which we would hope by now the support for is so basic, so common place, so easy. But evidently that’s still not the case for so many people.

Everything is going to be KO is a brave, very exposing, very heartfelt piece of theatre, encompassing presentation, spoken word poetry, anecdotes (which must have been mortifying for her at the time), lovely characterisation and beautiful tributes to the people who helped her get where she is now. The show elicits so many responses; it’s touching, honest, anger inducing and wonderfully self deprecatingly funny.

Stone was told by a couple of those unicorn teachers that she is a writer and that observation spurred her on. I’m very glad did, because she is an excellent story teller, and this production sheds a lot of really useful light to those who don’t suffer with dyslexia and support to those who do.

Everything’s Going to be KO at Pleasance Courtyard 12:45

Reviewed by Lou-Lou Mason

Lou-Lou is a director, copywriter and dramaturg. Her current show Fallout by Serena Haywood, starring Katie Richardson is at Free Fringe: Laughing Horse @ The Phoenix, 2:45 daily.


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