reviewer: ZOË GREEN
WITH the longest title on the Fringe, Matei Visniec's new play is a surreal love story between a melancholic Baudelaire-spouting saxophonist and the strange siren-girl he finds in his bed one day. Who is she? She, smirkingly and knowingly, won't tell him - she could be Solange, or Mathilde, or whoever he wants her to be. Where is she from? Her lips are sealed. How on earth did they meet? She will only tease him: they met at Kiki's new bar, at the launch, so she says . But he doesn't know anyone called Kiki, doesn't know which bar she means. Entranced, he asks a favour: nine days to get to know her and, after much persuasion, she agrees.
What a nine days it turns out to be: they construct their own world, separate from reality, in which they keep invisible pets, grow wings and learn to speak without words. The only problem is that the outside world isn't quite ready to let him go.
Does he find happiness or is it all nothing more than a dream? Can anyone lure him back to his old world of bars and gigs and late nights?
This is a play that, unusually, is about both people and ideas - one is never quite sure where one ends and the other begins. Geraldine Cottalorda is a mesmerising and slightly creepy Solange, while Adam Hypki is perfect as the dry but dreamy saxophonist. Hypki and Cottalorda have a rapport that makes believing this crazy love story absurdly easy.
It's a little slow at the beginning, Cottalorda smiles too much and sometimes Hypki doesn't know what to do with his hands, but otherwise it's touching, thought-provoking and definitely worth seeing.
Until 14 August. Today 2.45pm
Three Weeks ****
Waking up beside a strange girl with no memory of the night before, Michel plans to spend nine nights with her, getting to know her. What follows is a bizarrely intense sexual relationship, controlled entirely by the mysterious girl. The coupling is highly charged, and cuts out any sense of a reality that may be going on around them; in fact it seems unlikely that the woman actually exists in reality. Fascinating in its oddness, the show leaves open many questions about both the characters and their situation that seems to span the gap between the real world and the world of dreams. An interesting and surreal study of an intimate and alien relationship.
Reviewer: ©Pippa Tennant 11 August 2005
This brilliantly bizarre, yet fantastically funny philosophical comedy by Matei Visniec is extremely entertaining.
She, Geraldine Cottalorda, and he, Adam Hypki, are strangers and yet lovers, one of the many paradoxes which constitute the haze of dreamlike enchantment which we experience. Intimacy and knowledge are examined through the nine nights of sexual levitation he spends with his ‘black cat’ temptress, who holds “all the answers”, possessing mystical oracle status in this detached limbo land, littered with beer cans and vodka bottles. Does this woman exist we ask ourselves? As we become confronted with ever increasing abnormality culminating in the birthday present of an invisible bird, continually impregnated by light, producing hundreds of offspring which unremittingly proceed to make love to Michel, we realise that the answer to this question is insignificant!
Focusing on obsession and one’s descent into insanity, this play is far from pretentious. It overflows with interesting observations, poignant analogies and examines vast depths of emotion, wee elements of which seem worryingly familiar!