Review by Amanda Lancaster.
“My,what big ears you have!”
“All the better to hear you with.”
“My what big eyes you have!”
“All the better to see you with.”
“And my oh my what big teeth you have!”
“All the better to EAT you with!”
And just like the wolf had eaten little red, so too did the audience devour I See Red. We all know the classic fairy tale, Little Red Riding Hood – or at least a version of it but none quite so like the patchwork of interpretations that make up the performance, I See Red.
In a beautifully woven together hour we a treated to a seamless string of entertainment by Western Australian Academy of Performing Art’s (WAAPA) 3rd year performance making students. Consisting of 9 short re-interpretations and re-imaginings of the classic fairy story, the audience is treated to a night of experimental adult puppetry and visual performances, each of which takes on its own cleverly thought out creative demonstration on the basic cautionary tale that is Little Red Riding Hood. With gorgeously witty metaphors cloaked in red, each creative aesthetic choice has been made carefully by the students themselves and it is this artistic voice that the audience so willingly devours.
The audience looks on with big eyes and pricked ears trying to untangle the magic, but the performers create such a believable reality on stage between such skilled visual manipulations and the wonderfully subtle use of use of sound and light that we will happily believe there are no strings attached. The idea of taking a a children’s cautionary tale, a fairy story and adapting it to that of a show for the entertainment and intellectual enjoyment of a theatre full of adults is a bold and unique idea. But the 16 performing artists have done so with such a beautiful sophistication, that I See Red is not only just well received but leaves you with a definite hunger for more.
In a modern world of forward fast-paced momentum I See Red serves not only as a reminder of what predatory pitfalls can hide amongst society’s seemingly simple pleasures, but also reminds us of just exactly how exciting and edgy the art of visual theatre, puppetry and object manipulation can be.
I See Red played at Spare Parts Puppet Theatre, performed by 3rd Year WAAPA students from 19th – 20th May 2016.