“Re-Visions is a strong piece of fringe theatre but can be stronger. After a few more revisions, that is.”
The play within a play is a well-known concept for a fringe piece, but has it ever before been performed as ‘meta’ as this? Re-Visions tells a story of a director trying to realistically recreate a past to which he was never present for. His great aunt was a survivor of the holocaust and The Director (played by Gur Arie Piepskovitz) tries to stage a play about a party thrown on the eve of World War 2.
Alongside the director is his equally ‘in-over-their-heads’ team – made up of the blunt Assistant Director (Avihud Tidhar), the self-absorbed showcase Actress (Maya Goldstein), the easily swayed Actor (Dami Adeyeye), and the ignorant Thespian (Bernard O’Sullivan). All the characters bring some interesting form of conflict to this production as they argue how this production should work seeing as the Director isn’t as clear as he wants to be.
The play deals with many themes such as theatre practices, reality versus fantasy and narcissism. It explores whether one can alter their reality simply by looking at something differently and with all the characters different approach to this, conflict comes quickly. The concept of this reminds me of a recent West End transfer from a play last year – Home, I’m Darling; a comedy about woman insisting on living the life of 1950s housewife (and altering her lifestyle, home and reality) after a nervous breakdown. The Director is struggling with the fact that making a realistic portrayal of something you’ve never experienced, isn’t as clear and easy as he wanted it to be. Interesting but also infuriating to watch.
The characters in Re-Visions are all naturally aggravating but are portrayed well. They are complex enough but the comedy aspect (which this play describes to be) can take a backseat too often for intelligently written conflict scenes. We leave the show with no answer but the question explored and left open. Piepskovitz (also the writer and director of Re-Visions) has moments that makes this play wonderful – such as the subject matter and various character conflicts. However, added plot points such as more romantic entanglements between the characters, dialogue-wise, seem to put too much on to the page at one time.
Re-Visions is a strong piece of fringe theatre but can be stronger. After a few more revisions, that is. Perhaps we will see a revival at the Edinburgh Fringe this year?
Social Media – @VisionsRe / #revisionsplay / www.facebook.com/revisionsplay