Home » Reviews » Off West End » Camden Fringe: Future Perfect: The Family Plot, The Camden Head

Camden Fringe: Future Perfect: The Family Plot, The Camden Head

Part of the Camden Fringe 2013
Em Fleming, Stephanie Gerra, Irving Jones and Stephen Keyworth

Pros: Hilarious, dark and twisted story telling.

Cons: Not for those who need visuals to connect the story together. Some of the stories were better than others, but that is normal for new writing.

Our Verdict: Theatre in its barest form. Our advice: Indulge yourself and allow someone to share a story with you.

Courtesy of Future Perfect Writers

The well known saying “Keep it simple, stupid” was never more apt. The concept of Future Perfect‘s The Family Plot is not complicated: several writers stand alone at a microphone in the corner of a small room and read aloud their own short story or extract from a longer work. Simple, effective and always engaging. This is theatre at its most naked.

Some would argue that what we witnessed was not theatre. That there was no connection between two people, no problem to solve, no solution. I would argue that there was all these and more. It’s all there in every story we heard. Some were great. Others not so. All were funny in a blackly comic way, and they were all very entertaining. I would love to get my hands on several of them and read them for myself.

All authors really established a strong connection to the words they were speaking, which is all really good actors can hope for. What about their enthusiasm in being able to share their work with an audience? Well, it was obvious that the writers relished the chance to share their stories. When a performer has that kind of motivation, the energy is contagious – a real treat for audience members.

I have one gripe (two if I include a very rude audience member) and that is with the two chatty ladies working the box office at the back of the room. It is not okay to open the money tin and start counting during the performance. Nor is it okay to whisper to each other whilst there is a show happening. It shouldn’t matter if it’s to do with the production or not. Unfortunately, although the performers had no control over this, it did hinder the audience’s enjoyment of Future Perfect’s stories. I hope that future viewers of this show don’t have to put up with that kind of behaviour, and are able to enjoy the performance unhindered.

Peter Brook once said something along the lines of having a lone person walk across the stage is all it took to create theatre. And of course he is right. The Family Plot exemplified this perfectly – each of the stories were very entertaining stories and I very much enjoyed being able to share in them. Shows like these are rare and not without faults (for example some might find it difficult to engage with such a bare medium), but my advice for anyone contemplating attending this show is this: indulge yourself and allow someone to tell you a story. You won’t regret it.  

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

Future Perfect: The Family Plot has finished its run at the Camden Head.
For more information about Future Perfect, please visit http://www.futureperfectwriters.com/

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