Latitude FestivalPuppetryReviewSouth East

LATITUDE 2016: Improbable and Blind Summit – Animo

Director: Lee Simpson
Venue: The Theatre Tent
Reviewer: Nicole Evans

Friday afternoon in The Theatre Tent sees Improbable and Blind Summit collaborate for an intriguing sounding improvised puppetry performance ‘like no other’. Animo has no set, no script and no real idea what will happen. Sadly this is where they went wrong…

It starts with promise, with the first sketch – set in a post office at the request of the audience – oozing comedic stupidity and teamwork, but that’s where the laughs end and the remainder of the show sees a lot of people getting bored and giving up. Those of us who stuck it out were left hoping for a big (and early) finish.

Literally improvising with a self-confessed ‘bunch of crap’, the five actors just don’t have the level of rapport or pre-emption needed to pull off such ad-hoc sketches. An awkward stick scene puts the final nail in their theatrical coffin and all hope of improvement is lost. We hang on in there for a final post-office attempt that falls as flat as the large letter they create in the process and the only person charmed by the masked, melting snowman – their last-ditch attempt at winning us over – is the pre-schooler who bids him goodnight.

With nothing to rely on but themselves, Animo really needed to be able to pull out all of the stops but,in reality, they didn’t appear to have any.

An epic fail for what could have been a solid and genius concept. A disappointing hour.


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