The Architects at the Biscuit Factory
The Shunt actors are “the architects” of a play you won’t forget. They welcome the audience to their imagination, which takes the form of an amazing ship where everything impossible seems to become possible. The experience is truly bizarre; the actors take pleasure in surprising the audience, walking among the audience, making everyone feel part of the story. Shunt’s shows are known for being interactive and giving the audience a chance to discover situations on their own, and this occurs throughout the performance: “You’re here to have the experience of a lifetime. This is your cruise, so enjoy it!” they cry. Music, circus, bursts of laughter, kisses and humour bring everyone together for a show that lasts 90 minutes but could continue forever. Everyone is sitting in the lounge on the same boat, waiting for the artists to tell them what the play is about. As we discover, it is about the architecture of our lives, and whether or not we’re able to build our own life, or if we let others build it for us.
Behind the absurd nature of the performance, Shunt try to engage the spectator with thoughts about life, fear, politics and propaganda. As everyone hangs on to every word voiced by the actors and follows their every movement, the feeling of manipulation towards the surreal is never far away. Getting lost in a maze, walking in the dark, screaming: each member of the audience becomes an actor of the play, of the sequence of events.
The entire show is possible thanks to the location: a former biscuit factory near London Bridge. A question then springs to mind: are we all, like biscuits, a mass product, conditioned to have the same reaction to fear, and always travel blindly in the direction put before us?
The Architects brings the audience together in an unconventional way, allowing the spectator to feel part of a heart-warming and amusing group during too short an evening.
The Architects is at the Biscuit Factory until 6th January 2013. For further information or to book visit the theatre’s website here.