Strip Theatre Present: Eigengrau – REVIEW
Otherplace at the Basement: Main Space
Weds 29th April 7.30pm, Sat 2nd – Sun 3rd May 1pm, Tues 12th – Weds 13th May 8.30pm
Four Londoners – brought together by the power of Gumtree – collide in a mess of one-night stands, karaoke, astrology and true love. Mark and Tim are old school friends living together, whilst across the city, Rose has just moved into Cassie’s flat. When Cassie and Mark collide after his one-night stand with Rose, they really hit it off. However, Rose isn’t quite as normal as she might seem at first. As her relationship with Cassie becomes more strained, and she becomes ever more obsessed with Mark, things spiral out of control, with devastating consequences.
For an infrequent theatre go-er like myself, Brighton Fringe Festival is the perfect opportunity to get out to some shows that I wouldn’t jump at the chance to see in a normal month. With that attitude in mind, I booked my ticket for Eigengrau (which means the absence of light seen when one’s eyes are closed, to save you flicking through the dictionary), grabbed my flatmate and made my way for the theatre, and I’m thoroughly pleased I did – it’s an animated, dynamic 90 minute show that I’d be tempted to revisit for a second time.
Truth be told, my heart sank slightly when I heard there was no interval, but there was no need – punchy scenes mean it’s all killer and no filler, and the energy from the cast ensured I was engaged for the entire performance. It’s incredibly funny and personable, with cringe-worthy moments perfect for fans of Peep Show and Fresh Meat, and yet the devastating moments are just that. The music was a real highlight – at times, jolting me upright, it’s a real remark on how frenetic life in modern society can be. With a minimal setting of just four white boxes shifted round on stage, the focus was entirely upon the actors. I particularly enjoyed Lottie Maddox’s portrayal of Rose, as she gave the character fragility, narcissism and tragedy all rolled up into one. We’ve all met someone like Rose, and you’ll definitely be racking your brains afterwards and comparing her against your contacts list.
For those who have faced the thoroughly modern dilemma of eBay, Gumtree and Spare Room, the story will absolutely strike a chord. Housed at Otherplace at the Basement, there are four more performances of the show, so if you’re heading out to see some theatre this May, Eigengrau is definitely worth consideration.
Buy tickets here – http://boxoffice.brightonfringe.org/theatre/9221/eigengrau