The production which played the Lowry at the weekend is told entirely without words and in their place are movement, haunting music and masks. This is a powerful and emotional tale of an old man who is confronted with solitude, but comforted by a rich tapestry of memories.
George Mann is writer, director and co-performer of this piece, which deals with the complex emotions surrounding love, loss and ‘moving on’. It’s a haunting journey through life, death and enduring love. After his wife passes away, William escapes to a paradise of fantasy and past memories, a place far from his grief. In this Translunar Paradise, he invents his own reality and lives as though beloved wife is still alive. Returning from beyond the grave, Rose revisits her widowed companion to perform one last act of love: to help him let go…
George Mann says: "My own experiences have taught me that death is very much a part of life, and aside from being sad and extremely difficult to deal with, it is also a wonderful gift.Translunar Paradise was inspired by these experiences and celebrates the beauty of love and companionship that exist both in life and in death.”
He adds: "This production is different in that we combine mask-work with puppetry. We tell this complex story using action and hand-held masks, switching between young and elderly personas and creating the effect of ‘time travel’. I had the idea for this great new way of working whilst watching a play that used Bunraku-style puppets, as seen in Japan."
Theatre Ad Infinitum have amassed a variety of awards – most recently an Argus Angel (for one of the most outstanding performances at the Brighton Fringe for The Big Smoke), and The Small Scene Theatre Festival Audience Award in Croatia for Odyssey. The company has also won a Stage Award, the BE Festival Development Award, was Mervin Stutter’s Pick of the Fringe 2008-10 and was nominated for a Total Theatre Award 2010. It has recently been awarded an Arts Council England grant for help with the creation and touring of Translunar Paradise Autumn 2011.
This new piece is part of The Lowry’s commitment to developing artistic talent which sees the Theatre investing in exciting new works from talented, up and coming companies in order that their work be showcased in the North West. The production is also supported by the Ustinov, Bath, BE Festival, MAC Birmingham and Redbridge Drama Centre.
Translunar Paradise is at The Unity Theatre in Liverpool on 27 September.