Skip to main content

Flash Festival 2017: Click Here by Stern Mystics Theatre Company at St Peter's Church, Northampton

The dark web has perhaps never been as relevant as it currently is with the recent shocking events where it is no doubt often being used for this kind of activity. Stern Mystics takes the dark web and offers a fascinating collection of stories and characters to teach me more during this show about the dark web than I possibly wanted to know. You leave this show both wanting to go and see this vast place, over 90% of the internet in existence and also absolutely never wanting to go anywhere near it.

Chris Drew
A Parkinsons' sufferer, a layabout with plans against his sister's partner and a neo-Nazi blogger are the three characters we follow during this play. The viewer and myself often unsure at first how each character is going to find themselves on the path to the dark web. The blogger is perhaps the most obvious, while I admit I did take some time to work out the Parkinsons timeline, as for the layabout. I genuinely didn't see that coming until much near the end. I blame that on my pure innocence of what is on the dark web.

Matt Kitson
Each of the characters is tremendously well played by their respective performers. Chris Drew once again a remarkable presence on stage in his collection of characters. Of all the male performers in this year group, there is perhaps no better performer in creating individual, absorbing people and in Click Here, he is allowed to play different ones within the same play and his strength is there to show at all times. The strongest, of course, is the recreation of the rightfully bitter and desperate Parkinsons sufferer, not only verbally brilliant but physically so as well with the cruel effect the disease saddles an individual with. He is quite remarkable at all times.

Matt Kitson's blogger is everything that you want a character that you despise at all times to be, vicious and cruel, but only through the safety of words, and hidden ones at that. His interviews are a little disconcerting as he appears so polite at all times and so relaxed in his rhetoric. While he epiphany is well played and developed at times, it somehow still feels a little obvious and I wonder really if someone really could change that much?

Tom Garland
The path of the final character is the one that intrigues the most and Tom Garland is effective and convincing as the layabout without the philandering brother-in-law. Again it might take a little bit of swallowing that someone would contemplate the lengths he does to resolve the situation, but who knows how you would react. It certainly as I have already said offers the most expected path for me and therefore is interesting purely for this alone.

I really enjoyed Click Here, so much more than many of the other Flash shows this year. It has brilliant characters, interesting stories and genuinely for myself, I learnt a heck of a lot of things from it, which is all no better recommendation that anything else as we learn better when we are being entertained by it. Now, what was that browser name again...?

Performance viewed: Friday, 26th May 2017

The Flash Festival 2017 ran between Monday 22nd and Saturday 27th May 2017 at three venues across the town.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Review of A Passage to India at Royal & Derngate (Royal), Northampton

Creating the world of E. M. Forster's A Passage to India for the stage and into a little over two hours running time offers many challenges, not least creating the visual world of India. However, this co-production between Royal & Derngate and simple8 throw away any need for complex sets, and bring the world of India, including some of its wildlife to life via boxes and bamboo canes. The success of this is really quite amazing as perhaps the crowning moment of the elephant brings home the most. Simple8 is an award-winning ensemble group and the way they work together to get their characters travelling through the world of India explains why they have received the awards.

A Passage to India is a 1924 novel telling of Britain's generally unpleasant rule in India and takes as its story an encounter between the elderly Mrs Moore (Liz Crowther), Adela (Phoebe Pryce), who is keen to see the real India, and Dr Aziz (Asif Khan). While their meetings seem pleasant, to begin with, e…

Review of The Flint Street Nativity, performed by University Of Northampton BA Actors at Maidwell Hall (Avenue Campus), Northampton

The Flint Street Nativity was presented by the BA Actors as part of a double bill with The Night Before Christmas, and you could hardly imagine such a difference in style. Tim Firth's genuinely, quite endearing play was quite the opposite to the rough and vicious Christmas spirit of the previous show.

Flint Street offers the intriguing situation of adult performers acting as children as they present to their audience (and always watched by the unseen, but a creepy red lighted teacher, Mrs Horrocks), their production of the nativity. It forms quite a delight of totally recognisable characters from your school days if you are able to remember that far back.

Among my favourite performances from this are Gemma Fensham as the total brat Gabriel, never seeming to have an expression other than sucking a lemon, as she breezily switches her best friend back and forth with abandon. She rather stylishly perfected the sulking strutting off routine as well, fabulous! Playing up to his size with…

Review of Balm in Gilead, University of Northampton BA Acting (Creative Acting) at Maidwell Hall, Northampton

Watching the production of Balm in Gilead sees my entering the fifth year of following the University of Northampton acting students, and what theatre they have provided over the years!

Balm in Gilead is no less intriguing than anything that has gone before, written in 1965 by Lanford Wilson, you might think this would be a dated item for the young students to be performing, however, nothing could be further from the truth. Set in a cafe (transposed to England from its original American setting), it sees the lives of addicts, homeless and sex workers converge into a mixture of good but mostly bad moments.
My first time in the Maidwell Hall saw an encounter with a brilliantly realised community full of the world of the cafe and the surrounding homes, cardboard boxes and dishevelled beds. As we enter the characters of this world begin living alongside us, addressing us, begging us for money, pushing shopping trolleys around offering off the cuff exchanges with the audience and confronti…