The Wedding – Bristol Old Vic until 20th Then Continuing to Tour
Review By Francesca Parker
Gecko Theatre Company
Created by: Amit Lahav
Gecko’s seventh touring production, The Wedding is an artistic exploration of a number of sociopolitical issues still present in our world today. Primarily used to illustrate this is the commonplace idea of matrimony. This widely celebrated occasion has been, in this instance, deliberately fashioned to demonstrate that we are instead wedded to society and have a contractual obligation to fulfil our duties. By following the lives of four individuals we are immersed in a world where, rather unusually, even with out the use of dialogue, we understand that everything is exactly as it seems; we have the power to make significant change.
In its production and development, Lahav has diligently researched the various rituals and practices of this ceremony worldwide. Weaving his knowledge seamlessly into the production, through the medium of dance and world music, he evokes a sense of unity in the audience. In a fractured world, where unconsciously, we spend too little time considering the individual struggles other people face, for 85 minutes, due to the power of his creation, we are acutely aware of our blindness. Lahav’s world depicts that happiness and beauty is not found by the acquisition of wealth and control, rather the sharing of love and companionship.
Photo Credit Richard Haughton
Props are carefully selected, and are highly effective in the communication of Lahav’s social commentary. Appliance white, iconic symbols of the mundane 9-to-5-slog circle the dancers in their attempt to break free from the shackles of responsibility. Briefcases, mobile phones, confined spaces and dimly lit desks become a thing loathed and inherently rejected. Similarly, the monochrome and drab clothing worn by the office workers, helps to reiterate the dulling effects monotony can have on a bright mind.
The Wedding’s lighting and set is deliberately dark, littered with shadow and loaded with meaning. Dramatic differences between light and shade highlights a symbolic, and stark, division in society. However, the glow of the rising sun, in the penultimate moments of the performance, demonstrates that, although a dystopian future has been realised on this stage, there remains, for the audience, the hope of a new dawn. An unveiling of lights and the removal of all signs of contractual obligation, the wedding dresses and briefcases, combined with an uplifting, rhythmical ensemble is the perfect finale.
Photo Credit Rich Rusk
Its beauty lies not only with the power of its expressive movement, but also within the incredible soundtrack and the impressive use of imagination, when creating the set. It dwells in the calibre of the performers, their innate ability to convey Lahav’s message and their unity. This production is a spectacle that should not, under any circumstances, be missed.
Catch the Tour
Autumn tour dates include: Bristol Old Vic / 17-20 January, Watford Palace Theatre / 23-25 January, Nottingham Playhouse / 1-3 February, Derby Theatre / 8-10 February, Liverpool Playhouse / 21-24 February, Cast in Doncaster / 27 February, Oxford Playhouse / 1-3 March, Nuffield Southampton Theatres 6-9 March
More Info Here www.geckotheatre.com
Supported by Arts Council England and Ipswich Borough Council. The Wedding is a Gecko production co-commissioned by DanceEast and New Wolsey Theatre Ipswich, Northern Stage, HOME Manchester and Beijing 707 N-Theatre Co. Ltd (Edinburgh Fringe Showcase in China) in association with Lighthouse, Poole and Warwick Arts Centre, supported by The Point, Eastleigh.
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