Awakening at the Old Red Lion Theatre is a Fringe-worthy show, the cohesion between the light and dark within this production really demonstrates the characters life. Cassie wakes up on someone’s front garden not knowing what has happened the night before and her subsequent journey is a discovery of the night before.
Firstly, the subject matter is important and needs to be expressed about more in theatre. Kirsty Osmon is the writer and performer of this piece; her writing is humorous and full of relatable references that draws in the audience. The story is impactful and thought provoking, done with a quirkiness that demonstrates the character, which is unique for this production. The character is well rounded and shows flaws and development throughout which gives the story depth.
The dramatic ending is strong and gives the piece elevation, however there are some directorial issues that can be improved for the fringe audience. Director Carla Kingham creates the world that the audience wants, but there should be more clarity with the use of props and multi-roling, Kirsty Osmon multi-roles some characters that are all different and clear in character, but only some are signified through props/costume. This causes an error in clarity of rules of this world.
The set and costumes are perfect, they truly reflects the internal and external life Cassie is living. Throughout Awakening the stage manager is another figure that keeps the narrative moving and is a part of the play, however this is distracting and at points obstructs the build and break of the fourth wall throughout the show.
The sound design enhances the production and adds to the humour of the production, some characters are voiceovers which adds another layer to the production in terms of having the feeling of another character on stage but also contradicts the multi-roling.
The build and release of tension is significant in this piece, both in the writing and direction. The interaction of the audience makes this show special as the character is so lively and creates an intimate relationship with the audience. Both tension and humour are shared with everyone in the space which makes both the light hearted and dramatic moments more impacting.
Awakening at the Old Red Lion Theatre is fringe worthy; it is true and thought provoking and I hope that it creates conversations on the subject matter it explores. The writing is humorous, and it is performed with truth and clear intentions. The world is unique, but the theatrical choices needs to be definite.
Awakening played at Old Red Lion Theatre until 17 July
Photo: Old Red Lion Theatre Website