Follow the Faun, Above the Arts

By guest critic Tom Brocklehurst, @TomLikesTheatre

The advertising calls this a ‘shamanic rave’ – perhaps that is the best description of this hour of shambolic, low-budget hedonism. But there’s a lot to be said for Follow the Faun as a night out, especially if you like any of the following: raves, drama games, aerobics and glitter. 

The show is essentially an hour-long raverobics session, led by our wired guru/dance tutor The Faun. Under his instruction we are led through a series of wild dance routines: we gallop along hillsides, we disembowel our prey, and we have lots of enthusiastic sex. There’s not really much more to the performance, apart from the predictable stuff about feeling your energy and loving each other. But most of it is great.

Andy Black as The Faun certainly takes his role very seriously, and it’s his charisma and conviction that carries the show. We’re told repeatedly early on that ‘not joining in isn’t sexy’ and this message seems to get through, as the majority of the audience leap into the dance routines with aplomb.

There are awkward moments – the miming of sexual exploits certainly had a few people laughing awkwardly, and the masculine tone of that section is more than a little seedy. However, hedonistic rave-ups aren’t the place for prudishness, and we were soon onto the next section – the lady-fauns dance their response in a rather tame tribute to female icons Beyonce, Eva Peron and, er, Marilyn Monroe. 

Criticisms aside, I went in with more than a touch of scepticism, and came out sweaty, exhausted and grinning ear to ear. This isn’t a show for everyone – certainly not those of a prudish disposition – but it’s great for a quirky night out or if you just fancy a shamanic rave.

Follow the Faun runs through 12 November.

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