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Camden Fringe: Static, Etcetera Theatre

Part of Camden Fringe 2013
Tom Nicholas

★★

Pros: There is a story to be told in this play. With twist in the tale and some clever dramatic devices there is enough to keep the character development moving forward to its conclusion.

Cons: The content is naïve and tenuous, falling short of its aim to drill down into what it meant to be under 25 in 2010. The grandiloquent language doesn’t sit well with the character and leaves him feeling disingenuous.

Our Verdict: There are some legs in the concept and commendable stage direction, however, there is a lot of work to be done to tighten up the content and delivery of this production.


Courtesy of Etcetera Theatre

What was it like to be under 25 in 2010? Growing up in the information age – 24 hour news, in depth, on site coverage of real world events, aware and informed yet unable to participate or influence the outcome. This is the crux of this one hander and there is a story to be told. The impact of such a childhood on one particular boy is explored in this play – we join him as he grows from being a news-hungry 10 year old loner, through his teen years full of violent thoughts to his disenchanted adulthood, yearning to leave a mark, to do something real.

It’s a strong concept and not without merit, however, in this particular piece it seems the surface is being skimmed. There is no real depth in the exploration, as though the boy himself were on the outside of his life looking in as a bystander. I didn’t believe the character was real, there was not enough empathy and angst, not enough new and personal perspective on the issues and current affairs that are presented as influential – I’ve heard this story before. The portrayal of the character is constant throughout and there is little difference between the demeanour of the boy at 10 years old, who uses language unheard of in a primary school, to the 20 year old man making his mark. The content and delivery fall short of the mark for me – perhaps I am just too old and cynical to appreciate it.

That said, there is a lot of intelligence in the stage direction and dramatic devices used throughout the play. It’s tricky to give over an hour of solo performance but it is achieved with energy here and it is never dull. There is a good use of the stage and props, some well-placed pauses, a relevant soundtrack and some humour (a lot of which I missed as I am of a certain age!). It has got lots of potential and it would be great to see this play tackle its subject with more daring mettle and revealing audacity. What is it really like to have been under the age of 25 in 2010?

Seen the show yourself? Agree or disagree? Submit your own review with our Camden Fringe Big Audience Project.

Static At the Camden Head till 30th July 2013 then transfers to the Fiddler’s Elbow, Edinburgh Fringe until 24th August 2013.
Box office +44 (0)131 226 0000 or book online at https://www.edfringe.com/search#q=show_performer%3Astatic&fq=dates%3A%5B2013-07-31T06%3A00%3A00Z%20TO%202013-09-05T06%3A00%3A00Z%5D

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