[THEATRE/Performance ~ SA]
The Factory at The Garden Of Unearthly Delights, Sun 15 Mar.
Are you feeling anxious? Fear (Not) is a reprise of a collaboration between Prospect Theatre For Young People and Cirkidz after an excellent reception of this show originally created for 2019’s Dream BIG Children’s Festival.
Using a workshop approach which involved talking to Middle School-aged people the cast and directors Margaret Steven (PTFYP) and Jono Dragt (Cirkidz) have created a series of vignettes which sensitively explore the issues of bullying, body image, friendship, trust, the state of the world, and social media.
The dialogue is authentic, and strikes a chord with the audience as we recognise and identify with the characters’ feelings and reactions. More importantly we are asked to think critically about fear and anxiety for adolescents, and the performance also suggests some solutions for an almost ubiquitous rise in anxiety amongst young people.
With a cast of 47 this show needs to be well paced, and with constant, precise movement the well-rehearsed cast pull this off without a hitch. Dialogue is delivered believably and the use of humour helps a sense of hope permeate what could otherwise be a difficult topic. A gentle ribbing of teachers and schools is done with relish.
The use of acrobatic circus skills is brilliant and incredibly effective, whether it be performers contorting into spiders, building human pyramids, or using a hula hoop routine to illustrate how fear traps and encircles us, preventing us from moving forward.
The messages in this show are simple but contain a lot of depth, and I am reminded of the film Inside Out. This is quality youth theatre and I look forward to seeing future collaborations from these two companies.