Uneventful

Uneventful

27 March 2018

Blackouts make Daniella Harrison zone out during The Events

It’s 9:30 pm at Leicester Curve. It is very hot. The staircase smells of sweaty paint, if that makes sense.

“This show contains upsetting content.”

Enter

A choir, gathered around the piano, warming up. Not the best, but they’re OK. They seem kind of bored, kind of like they don’t want to be there, or know what they’re doing there.

A Boy (Kishore Thiagarajan-Walker) with deep, haunting eyes enters the music room. He’s silent. Headphones plugged in. Tuned out. This is the boy who will become the shooter.

Blackout

Claire (Athena Tzallas) is affected by a shooting which she almost died in. She feels guilty. David Greig’s play is in part based on the Norway attacks of 2011.

Blackout

In addition, Thiagarajan-Walker plays all of the other people in Claire’s life, as well as the boy: a therapist, a politician, and her partner Katrina. He’s excellent at distinguishing each role with subtle body language shifts such as wringing hands or a slouched posture, and he

Blackout

Dizzee Rascal’s 2009 banger "Bonkers" plays as Boy recites a monologue, with the music ending as he shouts "Bonkers" in time with the song. With the Norwegian coffee song sang by the choir in the opening and now some noughties hip hop the genre is a bit muddled.

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Lights on audience

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Lights on audience

The audience layout is odd. The venue is an end-on studio space, but some chairs have been placed at the side, creating a makeshift thrust. The audience are very close to the choir, who sit, rustling their folders (presumably with scripts in) at the back of the stage with a piano.

Blackout

Chairs are clumsily moved in and out of the main acting area in the fleeting blackouts. It is surprising the audience don’t get hit.

Lights on audience

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Chairs move

Lights on audience

The performance is very still, which is a good thing. Both Tzallas and Thiargarajan-Walker are very still, drawing attention to dialogue and the story they are telling. The same can’t be said for the guy in the choir who keeps playing with his lip.

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The choir sing a choral version of ‘Bonkers’. It is a bit. Is the song choice insensitive for the piece?

Lights on audience

Chairs move

The Events is a show that is acted incredibly by its two leads. It could be beautiful. There’s just one too many lighting cues that

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Interrupt the flow of the scenes, causing the pace to lag and attention to be diverted, rather than sticking with the narrative.

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Photo credit: Giulia Delprato