Care Not, Fear Naught

Mon 6th – Sat 18th August 2018


Martha Crass

at 01:39 on 8th Aug 2018



This is the largest cast I’ve seen at a Fringe show so far, and at first the stage seems to possess a certain energy, all these bodies waiting to spring into action. During the play’s first few scenes, however, it feels as though the stage is crowded with people; this collective who had seemed to hold potential now begin to distract from the performances themselves.

The choice of costume doesn’t help direct the play’s focus: with the entire cast dressed identically in blue shirts and dark trousers, and only one other character mildly differentiated by a pale tunic, our protagonist Anne Bonny (Anna Herzog) blends easily, frustratingly, into the background. The play’s colour palette doesn’t help matters: the costumes are all an identical shade of blue, the simple box props are a similar tone; even the lighting is a bright sapphire and serves to dull the cast while simultaneously blinding the audience. A prolonged shipwreck scene was even quite uncomfortable to watch (and was rendered almost unwatchable, at that) due to the piercing blue lights which flashed aggressively throughout.

Another issue here was with the delivery of lines, although I am unsure if this was purely the cast’s fault. While none of the cast projected their lines very strongly, any remaining clarity was further impeded by the drone of the air conditioning in the background which was necessitated by the painfully hot venue. Many actors also had trouble enunciating, which made it difficult for what may have been an engaging script to really draw in the audience.

The ensemble undoubtedly worked hard, and each actor seemed to thoroughly enjoy their role. It was just a shame that the play seemed to suffer from a lack of direction, in both a practical and a narrative sense. The choreography, however, was certainly thought-out and inventive, with individuals, pairs and the cast as a whole used to frame and heighten elements of the play’s action, which did help the story to flow organically. There were also some well-devised scenes of combat and violence using the ensemble, but sadly these moments of originality weren't enough to sustain the entire show.

Anne tells us in the first scene that she was thought to be a ‘devil child’ as an infant, and that this doesn’t simply mean she was mischievous, but rather that the devil was thought to inhabit her. This sinister tone is never again explored, and really the rest of the play feels largely as if is operating on one emotional level, an excited, excitable, giddy romp through the seven seas. The more pensive and thought-provoking moments surrounding the true story of Anne being forced to live as a man never really landed.

This should have been fun to watch, inspiring perhaps; sadly it falls short. While this is no discredit to the cast’s enthusiasm, it's unfortunate that ‘Care Not, Fear Naught’ ultimately fails to tell its story as fully as it could.


Amy Barrett

at 09:42 on 8th Aug 2018



Temporarily Misplaced have brought to The Fringe a production of ‘Care Not, Fear Naught’, both written and directed by Emily Hutt. The show presents the true story of an eighteenth-century Irish woman, named Anne Bonny, and her journey toward freedom. But besides this it was hard to follow much – I'd like to put it down to the heat of the room

If a show about female empowerment, apparently set on a Caribbean pirate ship, appeals to you, I urge you to read a synopsis before attending this play. Luckily, the production team provide each seat with a synopsis and cast list which explains that ‘Care Not, Fear Naught’ follows the tale of Bonny who learns what it is to be her own woman whilst dressed as a man on board a ship. On reflection, I struggle to remember any of the events described taking place: a result of an unclear plot and poorly delivered lines.

Whilst no actor’s performance was terrible, no one’s performance stood out. Bonny’s Demons, played by Jasmine Cartmell and Rosie Skuse, used physical theatre well to portray her bad thoughts, however their lines were so whispered and indistinguishable I literally had no idea what they were saying and lost interest.

However, the ensemble worked together successfully. Even though I had become disinterested with the dialogue, it was satisfying to watch slick choreography that was paced well and often included the moving of crates to create the set. The stage combat was particularly impressive. The combination of acting and the use of rope to create the sound of a whip was the best stage combat I have seen at The Fringe. Anna Herzog played Anne Bonny, who had incredibly convincing reactions to each crack of the rope.

Up until the point where the ensemble turned into ‘the sea’ I could withstand the play. But the harsh blue strobe lights used in this scene genuinely hurt my eyes. After mere seconds I could no longer see what the actors were doing and had to close my eyes until the scene was over because of the pain. From this point forward, I kept looking at my watch wondering when I could leave the unbearably hot and bright venue as I’d completely given up on the production.

‘Care Not, Fear Naught’ is a show where both cast, and creatives had the intention to produce a piece of theatre with great sensitivity and liberation. But the ungraspable plot, painful tech and roasting hot room made me ‘care not' much for the production.


Audience Avg.

0 votes, 0 comments

Click here for more event information

cast involved

other events on

Version 0.3.7a