Tuesday, September 22, 2015

September 22. Day 265. the Luck(y) Child

 At the end of The Luck Child  in the fabulous Spiegeltent this afternoon, solo performer David Collins asked the crowd: "Who is seeing a stage show for the first time today?". All these little hands went up. Those little hands stayed in the air when asked if theatre was better than TV or screens. Now I wouldn't for a moment think that the kids in the audience of The Brisbane Festival show are about to throw away their iPads but they had just experienced something very special. The joy of live performance. Collins, one half of the Umbilical Brothers, was able to use just his body, some cardboard boxes and some rather lovely lighting and sound to create a modern fairytale that had the kids captivated. Funnily enough, the show was not all that different from the very adult show I saw the Umbilical Brothers perform at the Sydney Theatre Company earlier this year (if you strip out all those rude words and gestures). Very physical, very funny and completely absurd. Frankly I think the Luck Child is Collins himself. How lucky is a man who gets to embrace that child-like silliness into adulthood? No-one's saying it isn't hard work. Being all the characters in a fairy tale and keeping kids entertained for 45 minutes - that's a big, big ask. But the reward of knowing you've just started another generation on the road to theatrical salvation - and been paid for it - how good is that?

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