Tuesday, 26 March 2013

As It Is (Mayfesto), Pastoral (Soho Theatre), Un Petit Moliere

Vanishing Point don't mind tackling tough subjects - their Edinburgh International Festival entry Wonderland confronted their audiences with the online, violent pornography - and their contribution to the Tron's Mayfesto season is a chilling journey back to one of the 1990s' most horrifying conflicts. As It Is has been created by Associate Artist, Damir Todorovic and revisits the war in Bosnia.

Following the theme of Mayfesto, As It Is grapples with issues of identity: yet in a Europe where national identity is in crisis, belonging to one nation or another can be a matter of life and death. Todorovic's characters is looking for the truth in his past, but finds that memory can play tricks and even a lie detector might not be enough to get to reality.

Apart from undermining Jeremy Kyle's moment of high drama, As It Is is a reminder that identity isn't just a parlour game for armchair politicians. The war in Bosnia has become a flashpoint for questions about civilisation and nationhood: a brutal conflict sprung up in what was supposed to be a continent that had grown out of warfare. In a state twisted by totalitarianism, the truth is neither simple nor necessarily possible: lies may be the only way to stay alive, or live with any integrity.

Tue 14 – Thu 16 May, 7.45pm

Another new work - this time in London, the winner of the Soho Theatre's Verity Bargate Award for new writers - deals with humanity on the brink, albeit in slightly easier circumstances. Menacing cats and strutting voles are stalking the countryside, and nature seems to have become dangerously fecund. Although Thomas Eccleshare's script has a dark humour, its representation of nature preparing to take back the planet from humans is sinister and serious
Previews: Thu 25 – Sat 27 Apr, 7.30pm
Wed 15 May – Sat 8 Jun, 7.30pm
Matinees on Thu & Sat at 3pm
Press Night: Fri 17 May, 7.30pm

After two dark, modern plays: a little light relief. I'll let Lung Ha's Theatre Company speak for themselves...

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