Thursday, 17 May 2012


Hailed as 'the theatrical event of the year' it was with some trepidation that Em (dawg) and I headed to Islington's Caledonian Park for World Theatre's production of Babel last night

Welcomed by white-clothed cast members, we were straight in, and led through the winding paths of the park fizzing with expectation and crossing fingers for no rain. 

A variety of surreal scenes confronted us from a woman ironing up a tree to a man waltzing alone across an empty tennis court, played out in and around the foliage. 

The sound was impactful - A persistent beat overlaid with rhythmic breathing pulsing from somewhere out of sight, adding a hard-edged anticipation to our bemused wanderings. 

Ushered to the centre of the park, we found ourselves before the tower, around which a series of tents and stages had been set up. There was a real festival feel to the space - An incredible band kept up the magical feel, moving from husky-voiced blues to beat boxed garage with ease.  

Monologues were given from brightly lit bandstands, telling stories in all different languages.

The audience were spoilt for choice with things to see and do - encouraged to participate in the building of bamboo huts, or try a spot of knitting. As Em and I sat down to learn a lullaby in a cushioned tent, a sudden bang had us genuinely nervous and it was back to the tower again, where the play began.

I'm not entirely sure what happened after this... it was a little hard to follow, magnificent though it was in all it's musical and luminescent glory. The play itself was actually my least favourite part of the evening - the story told disjointedly, preferring drama to well written dialogue. A little read-up on Genesis' stories on the Tower of Babel would probably have helped. 

That's not to say, however, that I wasn't mesmerised. The choice of location, or indeed the raison d'être for the production was blindingly obvious - the tower looked phenomenal. Projected visuals were cleverly designed to work neatly with the structure - the clock face becoming a window out onto the crowd through which the baddies' eye peeped.

Whilst not the finest piece of theatre I've ever seen, the production is certainly an experience and has been filling my thoughts a fair bit today. With only 4 nights left, you'll have to be quick if you want to go, but I would. Definitely worth a view.

Follow This Blog !!!

No comments:

Post a Comment