Let’s Get Lost
Katzpace Studio Theatre
Reviewed – 29th July 2018
“Barry has created characters that heavily contrast with one another, and yet very believably get along”
Continuing their residency at the Katzenjammer Bierkeller, Exploding Whale’s production of ‘Let’s Get Lost’ (an original piece inspired by J.M. Barrie’s ‘Peter Pan’) follows the lives of Wez and her four closest friends in an imagined seaside town. The story takes place after the death of Wez’s Mum, and the supposed death of her brother, and shows how all the characters cope with loss, changing friendships and growing up. It is the first play written by cast member Bebe Barry, and only the second production for this budding company.
Coinciding with the start of the Camden Fringe, London is currently awash with companies just like this, all aiming to put their mark on the over-crowded London theatrical map. Whilst many of these productions will go down as highly amateur, this will not be one of them. As soon as I entered the space I realised how excellent an idea it was to perform a play in a bierkeller. The huge underground beer hall was transformed into a lush green park, surrounded by fairy lights and deck chairs. Plus there was a bar with a wide range of beers at the back of the room. It was a refreshing and welcoming environment to walk into, and left the audience at ease that what they were about to see would be enjoyable and professional.
The real triumph of this piece is how Barry has created characters that heavily contrast with one another, and yet very believably get along. Each character provides a different presence and energy, whilst also slotting into the dynamic of the friendship group seamlessly. This is an excellent indicator of both good writing, and a company of actors that work well together. The characters that stood out most were Pup and Alfie, played by Bebe Barry and Julian Bailey-Jones respectively. The energy both of these characters gave off was impossible to ignore, and provided the audience with the most enjoyable and satisfying moments of the play.
By contrast however, there were too many other moments throughout where the energy was low, and the piece lacked the urgency that seemed necessary. It was commendable that a play centred on death didn’t focus too much on the negative; however it was a theme that wasn’t given enough severity or dramatic significance. These moments of low energy made the script seem amateur.
If you are a keen theatre goer then chances are that you are going to see a lot of theatre this month. I doubt you will see any new companies who are as professionally organised and well produced as these guys. I do hope, however, you will get to see pieces and performances with more urgency and drama. Still, I see this show only getting better as they continue their run.
Reviewed by Edward Martin
Photography courtesy Exploding Whale
Let’s Get Lost
Katzpace Studio Theatre until 31st July
Previously reviewed at this venue