by Lynn on February 17, 2023

in The Passionate Playgoer

Live and in person at the Theatre Center, Franco Boni Theatre, Produced by Theatre Conspiracy. Plays until Feb. 25, 2023.

Created by David Mesiha

This is how the show is described: “This boundary-pushing piece utilizes mirrors, immersive projection and surround sound to bathe, and sometimes plunge, audiences into ever-shifting cognitive and spatial perspectives. Audiences are encouraged to move through this dynamic installation to witness a variety of signs and sounds that continually alter the participant’s experience.”

They aren’t kidding, this show is ‘boundary-pushing.’ We enter the space one by one, asked if we want to have a picture/video taken for future use. We are then led into the performing space. If one is sight impaired the very low light might be an issue until one becomes used to the dark that is illuminated in patches at various points in the installation. We can look in mirrors and see our face illuminated. If we look again, we see our whole body.

Pools of light are inviting. As I stand in the center of the light, I hear a faint sound. On the floor  is a speaker and if you crouch down and listen it’s a man talking about his immigrant experience. Depending on where you stand in the light the sound is either faint or louder. In one pool of light I was crouching down and someone said to stand away from it where he was and the sound was louder and clear. There were recordings of people who were forced to leave their countries and move somewhere else. There were beams of light that almost looked like artwork in themselves. Light formed squares on the floor that then changed into pulsing overlapping patterns.

Questions were asked: What do you look like? How did you come to look like that? How do you walk? Questions that make us wonder at the answer. We are mindful of where we are in the dark and who is around us. Movements are careful, respectful, and awareness of our space, heightened.

Photos were flashed on screens in various configurations. They changed and perhaps remained the same. Some were hazy some were not. If one revisited a section the view/perception was different because the installation was always changing as was our perception.

David Mesiha has created a complex, subtle, provocative installation to challenge our every perception. Wonderful.

The Theatre Centre Presents a Theater Conspiracy installation

Opened: Feb. 15, 2023.

Closes: Feb. 25, 2023.

Running time: 1 hour.

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