GENRE: Physical Theater
GROUP: Y2D Productions in association with Chamäleon Productions
ATTENDED: Fri., Sept. 13, 9 p.m., Arts Bank
CLOSES: Sun., Sept. 22
BRIEF SELF-DESCRIPTION: "An ordinary man's world becomes unhinged in this gleeful combination of circus and theater arts, a gravity-defying performance of exceptional acrobatic talents and optical illusions."
WE THINK: The wonderfully imaginative LEO uses a simple set — two walls, a floor, a suitcase, and a strategically placed camera — to create a mini-world, based on optical illusion, that defies the law of gravity. The cool thing is you see straight away how the illusion works. I won't spill the beans on that; it's part of the fun. But even cooler is that fact that peeking behind the curtain, so to speak, only makes the show more enjoyable. You have a greater appreciation of the nuance and nimble creativity of the solo performer, William Bonnet. And even better, you will still find yourself wondering how some of the optical trickery is accomplished.
The premise is also simple, and again, I won't give too much away, but in nutshell, a guy in a room investigates different ways to move around the space to make things for interesting for himself. It's like he's thinking, "Hmmm, what if I do this?" Followed by, "A-ha, well then, what if I try that?" It begins with basic futzing around and becomes more complex and precarious as the main character pushes the limits of his imagination.
Bonnet is a savvy physical performer; even a slight movement of his hand or foot can affect our perception. Chalk drawing and animation creeps in to enliven the action, but basically, this is one man asking us to split our attention between what's real and what's fantasy. Guess which side wins.
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