The Judgement of Hakim looks at truth and how far we would actually go to find it. It digs deep into our subconscious and points the finger at the audience, making the point that not much is secret anymore thanks to the digital age we find ourselves living in.
With the Unity stage pretty much empty expect for a white screen, a desk and a few bits and bobs, the action is led by Hakim himself, played wonderfully by Nick Birkinshaw. There are several other actors dotted around the stage and they are introduced not as 'guards' but as 'assistants' who act as his eyes and ears and are quick to take note of anyone who may not be paying attention.
There is a fair amount of audience participation, designed perhaps to unsettle and shift the focus away from what is going on, on stage to what and who may be in the audience.
Writer Andrew Sherlock's observations about people and his sometimes direct script bring into focus the everyday issues that we are faced with in an exaggerated and at times uncomfortable viewing. With Mark Smith (Spike Theatre Company) as director, they have managed to produce a show that breaks down the conventional theatre experience and introduces the audience to a new way of watching theatre.
The Judgement of Hakim is a stark and innovative reminder of just how easy it is to leave a trail.
- Janie Phillips