Disclaimer: Before I start this I must admit that I know little about art or theatre, but I saw an intriguing play last Monday night and I wanted to share it, and I want everyone to go see it so I can talk about it with them. Also, full disclosure, a good friend of mine is the producer.
Distance from the Event is the new play by Collapsing Horse Theatre Company, one of the hottest new theatre groups in Ireland. Having seen (and absolutely loved) their Monster/Clock show earlier in the year, I was eagerly awaiting the arrival of Distance from the Event.
“It’s very, very different” was all the information I got about the play before I saw it.
Oh boy is it different. Set in a future world where human colonies are sent around the galaxy, the play centres around the exploits of two detectives who are trying to foil a paper smuggler who seems to be always one step ahead of them. At the same time a mystery starts to unfold about an entire human colony that has gone missing in distant space. Intriguing. I don’t want to go too far into the plot, but it is intricate and it leaves quite a lot up to the audience to interpret.
What struck me most though about this play was the astounding ambition. Here is a group of young writers, directors, actors and producers who aren’t afraid to think differently and take massive risks in the pursuit of delighting us. While I was watching it I just felt that this is what art should be all about. In an age of auto-tune and focus-group designed productions, here was a play that dared to try something totally different. The play probably isn’t for everybody but I absolutely loved it, and even if you don’t like it I promise it will leave you thinking and more hopeful about the future of Irish theatre.
Basically, go see it, and let me know what you think. It’s on as part of the Fringe Festival until 21st September in the Samuel Beckett Theatre in Trinity: http://www.fringefest.com/programme/distance-from-the-event