'Do something different' is part of a back-to-school attempt at
creating 'my perfect week' (an idea suggested by life changing Life
Coach Ed Haddon www.edhaddon.com). Which is how I came to find
myself on the rooftop of a multi-storey car park in Peckham,
amongst cocktails and a perfect sunset at Frank's Café and Campari
Bar - waiting expectantly for the new immersive performance of
Titus Andronicus to begin.
Directed by Pia Furtado and produced by Restless Buddha, this
bold, brave performance has scooped up Shakespeare's Rome, and
plonked it down in this gritty car park, with none of the usual
comforts, trappings or even necessities of a traditional
theatre. "There was nothing here," explains Pia. "No
electricity, no front of house, no seats." But by hook or by crook,
Furtado's made it work.
The strong-looking, young cast seem energized by their urban
environment and possibly influenced by the 1979 film The Warriors.
Particularly impressive are Adam Burton (Titus) and Christine
Entwisle (Tamora). The cast work easily amongst the brutal
surroundings, crawling along the roof, dancing across battered cars
and unphased by the regular rattle of the tube speeding by. It's no
surprise that Furtado's actors include a collection of parkour
practitioners and BellaTrix beatboxers all of whom are
choreographed by Temujin Gill (London 2012 Olympic Opening
Ceremony) working to deliver an unrelenting energy to this dark
And for those who run a mile at the word 'immersive', there's no
panic. This performance is less audience participation more
intimate experience, with the Adidas and Lonsdale-clad actors
dressed sprinting in and out of the spectators, occasionally urging
the throng to move along or perhaps (if you're lucky/unlucky) a
quick handshake or a sweaty hug.
Be sure to get there early for a pre-show sundowner while gazing
across London's dramatic skyline and remember to hold your nose
while walking up the unfragrant stairwell. It's all worth it, for
something both joyously and darkly different.
Titus Andronicus - tickets £19.50/£10 at www.billetto.co.uk/titus-andronicus
30th August - 21st September
Bold Tendencies Multi-Storey Car Park, 95a Rye Lane, Peckham