Tomorrow's Child - Edinburgh Fringe Festival (UK)
Reviewed by Justin Clarke
Assembly Checkpoint - Assembly Checkpoint
11:40 - Aug 16-28
1 hour 10 minutes
Suitability: 14+ (Guideline)
Group: Ghost River Theatre
Warnings and additional info: More information
- An experience you have to see imagine to get the most out of this unique and compelling piece of interactive theatre -
Blindfolded and taking with great care to enter the Assembly Checkpoint, Ghost River Theatre’s team at Tomorrow’s Child ensure to encapsulate you into the world of Ray Bradbury’s story from the moment you step foot into the space. This is perhaps one of the most unique experiences on offer at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and one that you have to let your imagination do the work, assisted by the sound utilised in the production.
Written by Bradbury, Tomorrow’s Child is the tale of Peter and Polly Horn and their blue, pyramidal newborn child, Py, who has been misshapen in the fourth dimension after a birthing machine malfunction. Bradbury’s tales are dystopian in their intent and written to focus on themes that resonate well beyond his context, encapsulating concerns that are in part universal in the 21st century.
Tomorrow’s Child focuses on the ideas of unconditional parental love and sacrifice as Peter and Polly develop an attachment for their pyramid son, one which ultimately sees Polly enter a depressive state due to their isolation of Py from the wider world. Ghost River Theatre extends on these themes, providing you with an intricate soundscape through which you are made to imagine the story and picture the ideas of parental attachment and relinquishment. Ultimately we are asked, how far would you go to be with your child?
The overall direction and sound design by Eric Rose and Matthew Waddell is astonishing. The amalgamation of high tech wizardry that surrounds you pushes you to have an out of body experience as you journey through Bradbury’s story. With the use of blindfolds, Rose and Waddell have essentially given everyone their own unique performance - no two audience’s will be the same. How you see Peter (Tyrell Crews) and Polly (Anna Cummer) deal with their fourth dimensional baby will be different to the person sitting next to you.
The ending of the production, when you finally take off your blindfolds is - well, I won’t give it away, but it’s a creative and clever way to warp yourself into the story.
You may, at times, find the overall sounds overwhelming as their placements and yours in the space literally envelops you. At these moments you need to persevere and continue to get the most out of this unique production. Go and experience it yourself!
EDINBURGH FRINGE 2023 CREDITS
Adapted from the Ray Bradbury story, Tomorrow's Child, by Matthew Waddell, Eric Rose and David van Belle
Based on the short story “Tomorrow Child” by Ray Bradbury, originally published as “The Shape of Things”© 1947; renewed 1975 by Ray Bradbury. Performed by permission of Don Congdon Associates, Inc.
Direction and Sound Design: Eric Rose and Matthew Waddell
Technical Director: Anton deGroot
Head Audience Service Mech and Company Manager: Marina Buston
Tyrell Crews as Peter
Anna Cummer as Polly
David van Belle as Dr. Wolcott
Wren van Belle & Aubery Hall as Py
Additional Performers: Geneviève Paré, Aaron Zeiffer, Helen Knight, Joleen Ceraldi, Evan Medd, Eric Rose, Matthew Waddell, Molly-Raine Dale
Additional Sound Mechs: Jozsef Iszlai, Cluj-Napoca, (Romania), Todd Helsley, Evansville, (Indiana), Tim Crawshaw, (Montreal)
Choir Mechs: Sarah Albu, Etienne Capacchione, Clayton Kennedy, Anne-Marie Lozier, Katherine Black, John Fitz, Elan Force, Willow Crump, Bruce Bart, Sam Callperk
Original Music: Jesse Osborne-Lantheir and Sarah Albu
Pyramid Design: Anton deGroot and Tauran Wood
Graphic Design: Laura Anzola
Publicity: Mobius Industries
Technical Support (Calgary): Tauran
Production Assistant (Edinburgh): Elissa Webb
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