UNDONE

Undone

 Undone

Included as part of a South African season this production-written and performed by Wessel Pretorius- is raw, corporeal and deeply involving. Starting off with Pretorius naked, excepting a string of pearls, bathing in a tin bath as the audience filters in then as soon as the house lights dim he starts splashing the bathwater around  absolving and cleansing himself in an act of catharsis and explanation whilst his carefully constructed words rain down in a simultaneous torrent of explanation.

 Drying himself with a towel and pulling on a pair of white briefs he is now fully dressed for the best part of the rest of the performance.

The tale he tells is difficult to penetrate at the beginning with talk of Dionysus and feathers clouding the fact that his main subject matter is a dysfunctional family-his own perhaps?- with Pretorius assuming various roles in an array of voices and different set of nuanced inflections. Thus a pair of high heeled shoes in his hand assumes the role of a telephone mouthpiece but when slinkily put on his feet they transform him into becoming a representative of his Mother. A battered leather jacket triggers memories of his father and tales of drunken debauchery and charged eroticism.

 All through Pretorius remains firmly in the spotlight giving a strongly visceral performance which uses his sinuous body in all its fluidity-mime and ballet aspects are touched upon- to give life to various aspects of his characters whilst his mellifluous voice gives body to the intricate and well thought out wordplay. It is quite an unfathomable tale for less seasoned theatregoers and suspicions linger that this may deter some from commending it too highly. Personally I thought any shortcomings outweighed these drawbacks as the strength  of the performance could sway any doubters as it is such a powerful intense work with a deep cathartic feel to it.

****

‘ Undone’ is on at Assembly George Square at 4.10pm until August 26th

https://www.edfringe.com/whats-on/theatre/undone

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