Candy Crush and Angry Birds are as as close as I get to being a gamer. But while I'm no gamer I'm game and given my life seems to lurch from one farce to another The Farce Awakens seemed like as good as any place to start at the Anywhere Theatre Festival. Also, The Museum of Brisbane is kind of awesome as a venue for a festival that triumphs taking theatre out of theatre and into unusual and unexpected venues. It took me 3.7 seconds to wonder what they had to use to sedate the museum staff to allow them to cope with that degree of crazy within their display halls. But OH&S is not my worry so whatever. Your mission in this theatrical game is to eliminate dull. Within this are various levels with challenges and lives. You can follow one thread or jump between them or mix and match. I took a fairly random approach. The advantage was I sampled the full smorgasbord of the farce. The disadvantage was the thread of the game was a bit lost on me. Did it matter? Nope, just watching it unfold was amusing and there were more than enough little pop culture references to keep me happy. Also I loved watching the actors respond in the moment. This is a game and how it ends up depends on how the audience of players play. This is the ultimate pick-your-own-adventure meets performance experience. This means there needed to be a script for all manner of eventualities. And the actors have to be ready and they were.
There is a finale where you learn just which challenges you nailed and which ones were an epic fail. You also find out how you went in comparison to other players/audiences. And for those who like me were still a bit confused, it also served as an ah-ha moment. This production is as ambitious as it is imaginative. For those who prefer something with a traditional narrative and structure, try something else. But if you want a bit of a a game with your performance, may this force be with you.
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