BE FESTIVAL: Légende – Birmingham REP

Writer: Romain Teule (France/Portugal)

Reviewer: John Kennedy

Ambient found sounds of passing traffic and tweeting birds drift about the auditorium. A gangly, bean-pole of a young man daddy long-legs about the stage. His performance lecture is an intriguing deconstruction of English pronunciation, syntax and literal interpretations. The screen text projections seeming drivel, enough to confound even Professor Stanley Unwin’s tautological scatology. He teases with linguistic red herrings, labyrinthine ambiguities. Soon his method becomes manifest. Words misheard can be written absurdly.

There are passages where the core conceit becomes confused. The segue into a ‘dance’ routine is as close as possible to your Dad and Noam Chomsky throwing some shapes about at the Sixth Form disco. An aberration best left to itself.

The school scene in The Birds where the crows attack the children elicits some nervous giggles – ah, these post modernists! The clues are beginning to become less opaque. The word embedded throughout the performance ‘hedgehog’ finally encounters its reveal: hedgehog-Hitchcock. Intriguing with a contemporary potency, Légende demonstrates, where language and truths are under increasing malign manipulation, that clarity is an existential axiom.

Reviewed on 6 July 2017 | Image: Contributed

Taking place between July 4 – 8, BE FESTIVAL is a cross-pollinating and boundary-smashing explosion of theatre, dance, circus, comedy, music, visual and performing arts giving audiences the opportunity to explore and enjoy the backstage areas of The REP where the Construction Workshop acts as a Hub to the festival.

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