[AUSTRALIAN PREMIERE ~ IMMERSIVE THEATRE ~ BELGIUM/HONG KONG]
Space Theatre, Sun 19 Oct.
This immersive and interactive show will plunge you head-first into the shark-infested waters of the international financial markets. Ontroerend Goed create an incredible space in which to explore the rational and emotional components of money, and the influence it has on all of our behaviour. The audience’s choices and reactions dramatically affect the outcome of the performance, and each of us is free to decide what approaches we’ll take, in this all-too-real intersection of money, greed and opportunity.
Ontroerend Goed, a theatre collective based in Belgium and led by Artistic Director Alexander Devriendt, specialise in one-of-a-kind theatre pieces that involve the audience as ‘participant-observers’. Through creating intense experiences grounded in current and near-future realities of world events, they allow the audience to interrogate their place in the world today both as an individual, and as a member of ‘team human’.
The collective has been touring the world since 2004, performing throughout Europe, New York, London, Sydney and Hong Kong, as well as being frequent visitors to the Adelaide Fringe Festival. Their previous performances in Adelaide include The Smile Off Your Face, Internal, Fight Night and A Game Of You.
£¥€$ (which can be read as EYES, LIES, or Pound, Yen, Euro, Dollar), cleverly dissects the psychology beneath the decisions made by traders in financial markets, by allowing each audience member to experience the fast-paced, adrenalised roll-of-the-dice that drives the global flow of money and capital in the modern world. The audience is guided by a calm and trustworthy croupier, who dispassionately explains the choices and possibilities available, and pushed by the rankings and data-gathering of the shadowy central bank. Slowly, each little island of decision-making begins to impinge on others’ choices, and questions of trust, collaboration, profit, safety and reputation are inexorably shaped by the emergent rules of the system being brought into being around you. As a piece of theatre, it’s a fascinatingly hypnotic experience; as a two hour seminar on the inevitable flaws of global economic markets under capitalism, it’s devastatingly effective.
Capable performances by the cast, who have to both perform their roles and explain the complex operations of the piece simultaneously, made this experience believable and completely absorbing – the performance flew by and I was amazed at how engaged I’d been throughout. The cast were supported by a powerful score and evocative lighting effects, with keys moments enhanced through both subtle and dramatic changes.
£¥€$ has a strict lock-out policy with no latecomers admitted, so ensure to be on time. And to get the most out of the event, it would be useful to have some cash with you (up to $20) – it won’t be spent in the show, but it will make your experience more interesting.
£¥€$ continues at Space Theatre, Adelaide Festival Centre, at various times, until Tue 22 Oct.
Book at BASS on 131 246 and bass.net.au. Click HERE to purchase your tickets.
Header image courtesy of Thomas Dhanens
Samir Veen image courtesy of Tom Verbruggen
Angelo Tijssens image courtesy of Michiel Devijver