Inside, Sydney Festival
In the confines of a small prison cage, a pair of Russian twins struggle to bring meaning to their bleak existence. They test, tease and comfort each other through a mixture of repetitive daily tasks and absurd physical challenges that are occasionally funny.
Frank Woodley and Simon Yates explore the intimate relationship between twin brothers in the face of a harsh and cruel prison environment. More an absurdist drama than comedy, the romantic and tender moments between the pair are the most powerful aspect of the show.
The performance is well suited to the intimate venue, with the audience basically in the cell with the twins and some clever surround sound enhancing this experience. As the opening night, the shortage of seating was surprising, but the heat and overcrowding added to the hopelessness of the situation.
Woodley was a natural leader for the slapstick routines, which were heightened by Yates’ impressive and seamless acrobatics. The physicality was engaging but the story line seemed basically non-existent. There was no background or context explored, and seemingly no purpose to the situation. The dialogue circled around nonsensically.
Though a few chuckles were drawn from the crowd, a different audience may have heightened the black humour of the piece, as there were a number of occasions where more audience interaction felt necessary.
Running to Sunday 27 January, The Famous Spiegletent, Honda Festival Garden, Hyde Park
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