Reviewer: David Doyle
For many years Antler Theatre have been one of the most interesting companies producing work at the Edinburgh Fringe. Their unique style has won them critical praise and is wonderfully exemplified in Lands, which may just be their most engaging work to date. Two friends together in a room, one making jigsaws, the other bouncing on a trampoline, is the setting for the show. With shades of a modern day Beckett in the premise and script, this is a strikingly ambitious piece from a young company who know how to make the surreal both enjoyable and informative.
The exploration of obsession on display is one that feels thoroughly modern in a setting that is timeless. As much as this is a piece that explores issues such as obsession, it is also a play that is incredibly enjoyable to watch. Full of laughter and joy throughout, the play works on multiple levels. It never falls into the trap of dictating to its audience. Instead, it allows them the space to fill in elements of the narrative themselves.
With stellar performances and an engaging script, Lands is a thoroughly successful piece of fringe theatre, and perhaps what is most exciting about it is its fringe nature. At a festival increasingly dominated by big names and productions, it is refreshing to come across a show such as this one, which feels true to the nature of the Fringe. Ambitious, exciting, and a little bit zany, Lands really does cement Antler’s place as one of the most exciting companies working on the fringe circuit.
Reviewed on 20 August 2017, run ended | Image: Meurig Marshall