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Uncle Tom: Deconstructed

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
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Realising its own version of Brechtian theatre, the Conciliation Project's Uncle Tom: Deconstructed unpicks, unpacks and unearths the racial tensions of North American history.

Using black minstrel imagery and the novel Uncle Tom's Cabin as a starting point, this show is Slavery: the Musical. It tears to pieces the North American establishments of church, hip-hop culture, media, literature and the educational system with a great big smile.

It is fun, visual and nauseating. At some points I lost track of the narrative threads due to the all-singing, all-dancing aspects of the piece, but picked them back up due to the immediacy of the scenes.

This show is not for people to 'one up' one another on theatre theory, but a human call to arms against deep-seated historical tensions which resurface in the present day.

If high art is the production of pretentious self-indulgence as performance, then Uncle Tom: Deconstructed is not art but work as it consciously works for something better, something we can achieve together.

- Jack Beglin


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