PICKLE | London, Park Theatre

Deli Segal’s hysterical, finely-observed one-woman show can most easily be summed up as ‘Jewish Fleabag’: Ari is a young Jewish woman (“twenty-nine and three quarters”), trying to navigate the dating scene in modern-day London.

At the core of the play is Ari’s journey from being plagued by Jewish guilt to finding Jewish joy. Early on, our heroine interrupts a sex scene (with a Gentile, no less) to assure us that this show is not Schindler’s List, and not everything Jewish needs to be about the Holocaust. Later, a loud alarm is sounded when someone at a party tries to talk with her about Israel.

Some of the biggest laughs are from Segal’s painfully accurate portrayals of the grotesque individuals in Ari’s life, including her brother’s super-frum wife, insufferably playing Jewish matchmaker. One of the best-observed characters is Ari’s old friend from her non-Jewish school, who finds Ari anti-social for not going along with Christmas, when carols are “so lovely”.

The show is part of the Park Theatre’s “Make Mine A Double” season of double bills, played back-to-back with a quick turnaround. Despite this, audiences can still expect some impressive visuals with the set, costume and lighting design (Andrew Brock; Laurel Marks) and some particularly hilarious prop comedy. Also, every audience member receives a printed glossary of over fifty Jewish terms. Jewish and Gentile are all welcome in this journey to find Jewish joy.

Playing at Finsbury Park’s Park Theatre 14 – 26 November 2022.

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