Bullying among young people is a very hot topic, and some people may be tired of hearing about it. If not tired, they’re perhaps too upset by it all and reluctant to upset themselves further by dwelling on it. I recommend seeing Grey Ground anyway.
The play is about a young girl, Molly (played by Caitie Graham), who is frequently bullied and gets into trouble when she comes to the aid of another victim of bullying. The story is very emotional and there’s a lot of crying and yelling. The emotion doesn’t always ring true — and the yelling did get on my nerves from time to time — but for the most part the story is believable and poignant. I was bullied in elementary school, and a lot of the frustration, helplessness, rage and so forth that goes along with it is accurately portrayed in Grey Ground.
Early in the play I was afraid that even though it was somewhat moving, it would ultimately be predictable and boring. But the depiction of bullying and all that it entails only became more believable, and the ending was much better than I expected. Coupled with skilled acting, a very well-casted ensemble, the play was a worthwhile experience. — Jeremy Willard
Grey Ground runs till Fri, July 13 at Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse, 79A St George St. fringetoronto.com