Hey, Hey, what’s that, what, that, a review, what, nothing, all gone, hold on, still here, that’s mine, it is.
As a fan of comedy theatre, I was very excited to watch this show when I saw it in the programme, however it seems I didn’t quite open my mind to the possibilities of comedy theatre and what that could mean. I was surprised, albeit pleasantly, by what it was I ended up watching. Where I expected a farcical drama performance, I actually received an incredibly well devised piece of stylistic movement and physical comedy which I found charming.
Splintered Itinerary explore the creative possibilities in melding clown, mime and dance in a theatre setting. Combining the lyricism of dance with the precision of mime – then splintering it all with the clowns humour and vulnerability. In The Submission nothing is quite as it seems and the walls of perception are paper thin. Meet Carbon Copy, Paper Pushers and Miners of ideas in a surreal comedic romp littered with tenderness and beauty. Stunning imagery meets movement, clown and theatre to bring you this extraordinary performance. This is a show not to be missed as three theatre makers let their imaginations free causing chaos in a world of paper piles and mountains of red tape.
Everything in this production was incredibly well thought out, starting with the setting, it was simple yet effective, piles of brown storage boxes (Which later became seats and tables among other things), pieces of paper strewn all over the place and a large waste trolley sat besides a huge pile of paper. The music that was used as the audience waited for the show to start was atmospheric and combined generic office sounds, such as typing and paper tearing in such a way that is made the room seem incredibly eerie.
We were promised surreal comedy, and straight from the offset, that is what we received. Emma Webb and Richard Jones were absolutely brilliant as they opened the show, with minimal words, repeated over and over, and with some truly entertaining and disciplined movement around the stage. Their simple characters with their complex, yet simple looking movement created a real sense of intrigue and comedy. This was quickly contrasted when the Ben Kingsley-esque Wayne Miller entered with some sort of Super villain air about him, his voice engulfed the room and quickly put me on edge so suddenly after feeling so relaxed. In one scene Wayne delivered a sort of monologue in which he spouted a lot of office and industry jargon, which fitted the mood perfectly and was funny in the way it seemed very different from the rest of the performance, and I think I would have liked to see more of that traditional scene-like acting, interspersed throughout the show.
Throughout the performance there was an incredible use of paper and the boxes, they were used as seats, tables, trays, napkins, and what seemed like radiation chambers and their alarm systems and as well as this, lighting was used incredibly well. Offstage they had four lights that would fade in and out and would give the general atmosphere to the scenes, but the true genius was that of the lighting used on stage. I selection of lit up objects, light bulbs, torches and a very clever use of a UV light made the whole show really fun and aesthetically interesting and pleasing to watch, a particular favourite moment of mine with the lighting was the blinking red boxes, it was amazing how they managed to have such an effect despite being a fairly basic thing.
On the odd occasion when something would go wrong with the props, all three actors were incredibly professional and were so relaxed in covering up the mistakes, in one case making for an extremely funny moment of a head torch breaking, leading to the aforementioned ‘Simple characters’ just repeating ‘Broken, what, oh no, broken, hold it, ok, holding it, what, mended’, which to be honest I think the actors should consider keeping in as a ‘mistake’ (Unless of course that is what it is, in which case, it was played out very well’
The whole performance was full of tenderness and beauty and was helped along by an incredibly designed soundtrack of atmospheric and encompassing music. The show was amazingly and cleverly choreographed and created a surprisingly beautiful and phantasmagorical piece of theatre which very almost made me teary towards the end.
If you have a chance today (13/8/17), then get to the Warehouse (Unit 4) in Ventnor Industrial Estate for 8pm and have a watch (I’d advise getting tickets in advance as to not be disappointed)
These can be bought from The Ventnor Exchange or from the VENTNOR FRINGE WEBSITE
Night Night, nice dreams, thankyou, nice dreams, night night.