Venue: Pleasance Dome
5 August 2011 WOS Rating: Based on a two-year research and development process, Icon Theatre’s new show promises “highly physical theatre” exploring the lives of three prisoners in their first months on the outside. Masterfully choreographed and brilliantly designed, the show’s major (but not quite fatal) flaw is that its physical and theatrical elements are oddly disjointed and of sharply differing quality. Release
The design team, led by Evening Standard Award-winner Mamoru Iriguchi, does a phenomenal job. Moments of real beauty, emotion and excitement are created from a versatile set, atmospheric lighting and soundscapes, and an AV design whose ambition should spell Edinburgh Fringe disaster, but here is neatly executed. These sections, often involving monologue, three-part chorus and riveting choreography, are a joy to watch.
But in between are a series of stilted and at times awkwardly staged scenes developing the narrative side of the show, as the released prisoners search (with differing success) for jobs and relationships while trying to avoid drugs and crime. Laboured and slow-paced, these scenes feel like a secondary concern for all involved, serving only to progress the story to the next set-piece moment; with the result that these impressive displays never resonate as much as they should.
- Will Young
Subscribe to our free newsletter