[Untitled project] #231

Seen at Edinburgh Festival Fringe on the 15th August 2019

4 stars – magic

Why has the French clown (Steve Pacek) stopped talking? A man (Davy Raphaely) tries to ask him in English, but this complicated everything. Five other clowns appear now and then to tell his playful yet moving story.

Despite being mostly physical, this show has overtitles for all lines in French, and sometimes for someone’s mute dancing. The US 213 Collective reinterprets and innovates the role of the clumsy-clown. A young girl (Samantha Shepherd) mesmerises the public with her dance, that mixes the strength of the acrobat with the grace of the modern dancer. Her choreography with Virgil Gadson is sweet and enchanting.

Sarah Gliko, Matthew Mastronardi and Liz Filios mostly appear in ensemble scenes, but clown has his or her personality, with a good degree of introspection. Differences in style and abilities are integrated into the story: Samantha and Virgil rehearse each other’s movements, until their hands meet. The scenes of ensemble are accurately choreographed, animated by live music.

Except for a gramophone, music comes from an accordion, a xylophone, a cello and few other instruments, but specially, there’s a versatile use of the voice of these unconventional and creative clowns. In a memorable moment, on the beach, after drinking, they start making music by blowing into empty bottles. A magic symphony is created from nothing else but waste glass.

This show, or Project, is such a mixture of elements that you don’t need to like clowns to enjoy it: it knows how to create beauty, thanks to the ability and expressiveness of the performers as well as to Steve Pacek (mute clown and director), Jenn Rose (choreographer) and Dan Kazemi (composer). Only problem: if you see it at the Greenside, fight to sit in the first row!

Greenside @ Infirmary Street – Ivy Studio (Venue 236), 6 Infirmary Street, Edinburgh EH1 1LT

Tickets and Info: https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/untitled-project-213

Twitter: https://twitter.com/213Untitled

Running time: 50 minutes)

Greenside @ Infirmary Street, Ivy Studio (Venue 236), 6 Infirmary Street, Edinburgh EH1 1LT

3rd – 16th August (except the 11th), 5:15pm

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