THEATRE – Angelique – Her Majesty’s – 4K

Image by Cynthia Gemus

Image by Cynthia Gemus

By Peter Maddern

Based on this show, the creators of Angelique – isthisyours – rightly claim they “create original and unconventional theatre for a smart, risk taking audience that revel in the possibilities of live theatre.” Whether they succeed as well living up to with some of the babble printed on the inside of the program is for individual judgment.

A family – a husband making dinner, a tired and unhinged wife and their rabble rousing daughter (Angelique) – share their dining room arguing about normal stuff until a parrot intrudes into their world reciting tales of elsewhere. From there, scene changes require us to move camp guided by lovelies similar to those in AAMI ads – only dressed in blue – and as the production progresses so do we into the depths and heights of the Her Majesty’s – at times the rear of the stage becomes a classroom, other times a scene plays itself out in the actors’ dressing room.

If nothing else, it is a fascinating tour of this great theatre and the condition of it that we witness starkly bares testament to why good people like Barry Humphries are behind the campaign to revive it.

To be fair, Angelique is audacious and arresting theatre and I was reminded of a refugee focused production that involved similar travel that kicked off in the Maj Gallery next door from a couple of Fringes ago. However, to my mind that was much more successful in getting its message across.

In a world where self-expression is now considerably easier than making a statement, Angelique’s (and our) travels open our eyes to alternative possibilities and the need to assess exactly where we as individuals are in this often confusing world with its amorphous intersection of digital and physical realities.

Kryztoff Rating  4K

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