Cats, Selfies and the Scattered Mind of the Incurable Dreamer at The Space
Cats, Selfies and the Scattered Mind of the Incurable Dreamer is a new creation by director Petra Pandora Freimund. The play is an exploration of our contemporary culture that is so dominated by the World Wide Web, while also confronting us with the internet’s intrinsic dichotomy: the possibility of unlimited exchange of knowledge versus loneliness due to improper face-to-face communication.
The stage is taken over by a three-person ensemble: Charlotte Higgins as The Dreamer, Simon Christian as The Stranger and Owen Clark as Misha. They act within a space decorated in whites, which invades the entire room so they are within the audience’s reach. It is supposed to be a pub-like structure called the Full Moon Café and this suitably correlates to the play’s title, as browsing the internet is often considered a nocturnal activity. Paper fragments are scattered over the floor, representing those daily factoids found on the web.
As the online conversation commences, these pieces of information do get spun together by the actors in an actual web that soon dominates the whole performance area. The Dreamer has a tendency to mention the graver topics and death is the most recurring one, suggesting that perhaps she sought solace for her grief on the internet. Her character is one to question the state of things. The Stranger is supposedly a newcomer and he is replete with sexual desire, which is often meant for The Dreamer. He is also a distributor of random knowledge that provokes amiable discussions with The Dreamer and derisive remarks from Misha, who functions as the annoying cynic found in the comment sections online.
The characters’ speeches coincide and are often repetitive, indicating the connectivity of the World Wide Web. It is a place where you can gain knowledge and entertain yourself and where engaging in philosophical debate is welcomed. But there is also plenty of rubbish to be found: advertisements and selfies at inappropriate times. The production likewise provides commentary on yet another internet problem, that being the uninformed reiteration of people’s opinions. While the web is spun, the full moon becomes larger and more prominently red whenever the conversation increases in its darkness. This culminates in The Dreamer announcing she is momentarily done with the internet. Surprisingly, no cats were present.
Cats, Selfies and the Scattered Mind of the Incurable Dreamer is at The Space from 24th until 28th August 2016, for further information or to book visit here.