fringe: theatergroep wak - levelless

levellessI saw the previous show by Dutch theatre group WAK, Niets is echt moeilijk, in last year's Fringe and thoroughly enjoyed it.

However, I think that their new show, with it's new slanted box, misses the mark almost completely.

There are a handful of great moments... a very small handful... but there's also a stretching abyss of nothing that happens between those moments. And then suddenly, it's over and you don't really feel like you've actually seen a show (or at least I didn't)...

The previous show was full of people running in doors and out of doors and appearing through trapdoors and disappearing through trapdoors and doing great slapstick comedy. In a word, it was full of action!

This show doesn't seem to flow like the previous one did... things stop and start and feel very disjointed and segmented and the performers disappear for far too long.

All of which is a shame... as I said there are some excellent moments... one involving venetian blinds, one involving what I'm guessing are plumbing parts and the last is the "blob" piece that closes the show. And their new box is brilliant... the perspective of it really does start to mess with your perceptions once or twice, but even that didn't feel like it was explored especially well.

And it wasn't just me. I saw the previous show on a Saturday night as well, although last time I saw the 7:30pm show, whereas this time it was the 9:00pm show... but the crowd didn't laugh even a quarter as much as I remember they did last year. And they were a slightly restless crowd anyway, but the show never really seemed to capture their attention fully.

I came away disappointed... because I know they're capable of so much more. It seems that trying to do a show that isn't about nothing is much harder than doing one that is.

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