Theatre in Wales

Theatre, dance and performance reviews

Mundo Paralelo

National Theatre Wales with Nofit State Circus and Théâtre Tattoo , Torch Theatre, Milford Haven. , March-26-11
Mundo Paralelo by National Theatre Wales with Nofit State Circus and Théâtre Tattoo There's a perception that circus is all noisy, raucous razzmatazz but there is another tradition. This is the French tradition of cabaret circus which takes on a wistful air as the acts are performed as though they are small dramas.

The clowning in this form is not the frenetic pratfalls of brightly painted figures but the deadpan, slightly melancholic comedy that reached a wider pubic with Jaques Tati.

It's this style that Nofit State in combination with the European Théâtre Tattoo and National Theatre Wales brought to the Torch. It was a show of quiet wit and gentle charms, performed to a music score that sounded like updated Eric Satie.

Within the confines of a theatre it's the smaller, quiet moments that work best in the show. Frida Odden Brinkman's elegant juggling while being turned upside down achieved an almost balletic beauty.

George Fuller's deadpan clowning was fully in the Tati tradition with elements of Comedia del Arte. There was some delicious, also deadpan, magic from Miguel Munoz.

The confined space of a theatre gave an added excitement to Adie Delaney's swinging trapeze work. There was a constant feeling that she might hit either wall or even the floor as she dangled and swung.

The mini dramas of rejection or acceptance that were woven into the acts didn't really get anywhere but they added a slight air of narrative to it all.

It threatened to become repetitious from time to time and I did find that the tightwire frame, which could have its position changed, became somewhat clunky.

Overall I found it an evening of gentle pleasures but if you didn't get caught up in its quiet spell then it wouldn't be so engaging. And for all the fine aerial work it's the juggling that will stay with me.

Reviewed by: Victor Hallett

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