Resonate, VAULT Festival

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By Zahid Fayaz

This is the first preview performance of a one-man show following Jacob, a young man trying to turn over a new leaf away from his previous life as a hard-living and loving party animal. He’s doing this through Jesus and focusing on his education. He is, however, finding this difficult due to constant interruptions from his friends and ex-girlfriends whilst he is trying to finish an assignment.

This leads to a crisis of confidence, and a breakdown in his mental state due to him being torn between two extremes. The lead actor provides an evocative performance enhanced by voiceovers of various characters, such as the young man’s priest and mother.

This is a highly polished production incorporating clowning, R&B music, lighting, rap and voiceover to tell his story. Written by Ntonga Mwanza, it isn’t particularly  verbose, but the minimal dialogue and movement pulls the different aspects of the young man’s life into sharp focus. Some of the movement is absolutely sublime, and there is an intensity and integrity to the performance. The best scenes include a homage to the Evil Dead 2, and an out-of-control night club evening, which function as outstanding set pieces.

This show is undoubtedly raw, but very promising  work from the producing company, Nouveau Riche. It’s not hard to see how after a few months, this could be something really special.

Resonate runs through 22 March.

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