Brighton FringeInternationalPerformance ArtPhysical TheatreReviewSouth East

BRIGHTON FRINGE: Collapse – Sweet St Andrew’s Church

Writers and Performers: Karlijn Hamer and Mathijs de Valk
Reviewer: Glen Pearce

One has to pity poor Cassandra. Given prophetic powers and foretelling the destruction of her beloved Troy she was ignored. Gifted with the knowledge to save her city but unable to drove her mad.

It’s a madness captured vividly in Karlijn Hamer and Mathijs de Valk’s musical duet, performed at Sweet St Andrew’s as part of Brighton Fringe’s Dutch Season.

The church setting proves apt, not only does its echoing acoustic enhance this vivid soundscape but there’s something quasi-religious about this journey.

Starting as disco, moving into oratorio then monologue and finally despair, Hamer and de Valk journey from hope to pain, from light to dark. A fusion of vocal dexterity from Hamer matched and amplified by de Valk’s techno loops and sampling, Collapsed is an assault on the senses but one that repays the effort to engage with it.

With very conventional spoken lines this is a piece that transcends language and unleashes raw emotion. As Hamer’s Cassandra screams we can all feel her pain.

If you are looking for conventional linear narrative then Collapse may not be for you. If you are looking for an examination of the ability of music and performance to capture raw human emotion then it is a visceral and moving experience.

Runs until 4 June 2017 at Sweet St Andrew’s  |  @brightonfringe

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