Presented by Dirty Market Theatre
Pros: Original, brilliantly funny, macabre, dark, bizarre, fantastical – get the idea?
Cons: The plot is difficult to follow in parts but just go with the flow; you’re in other-worldly realms here in Hoxton.
Our Verdict: Imagine Tim Burton directing an episode of Emmerdale whilst on an acid trip. Just go along with an open mind and let Dirty Market create their wonderful havoc.
|Credit: Jemima Yong|
You will be taken on a journey through nightmares by means of shadow work, songs, sinister characters and a giant puppet. This is a bubbling cauldron of fairy tales of the very Grimm variety, pantomime and nursery rhymes mixed with influences from The Wicker Man, Prime Suspect and Shockheaded Peter. Don’t get too comfortable in your seat because you will physically move around with the story which explains why this production couldn’t be staged in any formal auditorium. The scope of this factory space allows the Dirty Market team to run wild and they take full advantage.
The whole cast were outstanding without exception and some great characters were brought to life – Roxanne, the Dog Waitress, Alice and Lettice. A special mention has to go to Benedict Hopper who excelled with his renditions of Cody, Roz Clump, Bittersweet and Lemonzest. I’m grinning even now recalling it all and I’ll be thinking of him when I reach for the biscuit tin.
There are very few niggles but at times the storyline gets a bit vague and it can be difficult to figure out what’s going on. Despite that the entertainment keeps carrying you along and it doesn’t seem to matter too much. This is a disconcerting world of dreams where nothing makes much sense anyway. Unfortunately for the short ones of us in the audience the seating for the middle section of the show is all on a level surface so your view may be limited (one of the downsides to using a factory as a venue). There’s a similar issue with the final part which could possibly be remedied by some staging to raise the performers for a clearer view?
Beyond that words fail me and I can only advise you to go along and experience the theatrical ride for yourself.
Oxbow Lakes runs at the Old Printworks on 17-20 Parr Street, N1 7ET until 28th September 2013.
Box office 08444 771000 or book online at http://www.dirtymarket.co.uk/