The Dead

Part of the London International Mime Festival, The Dead, an adaptation of a James Joyce short story by Italian company Città di Ebla, was performed in the Barbican’s Pit Theatre. I’d never seen a mime performance before, so I thought I would give it a go.

The performance was made up of live-action movement in a bedroom, as an actress explores her grief at the death of her young lover. A gauze screen divided her from the audience, and onto this screen were projected still images, followed by real-time photography representing the woman’s happy memories of her lover.

The production was trying to explore the concepts of memory, nostalgia and grief, but ultimately I don’t know if it worked. The idea of showing real-time photographs, illustrating how quickly real life becomes memory, was an intriguing one, but I found myself trying to see past the pictures and the gauze and into the live-action events on the stage itself. An interesting idea, but not my favourite production.

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