REVIEW: Mars Actually

*****

By Isabella Fraser

This three-hander tale of Martians and discovering life on Earth is a sweet, funny show. The naivety of the characters is what wins over the audience; some of us may harbour a wish to explore new worlds and with these Martians, we get the opportunity to see our world through their eyes as a new and exciting place.

Superbolt Theatre are a group of talented performers and with Mars Actually the child-like innocence with which they describe their home and daily lives brings some awareness of the freedoms we have, as well as the restrictions they live under in a very different world. There are some lovely moments where that child-like exploration uses quirky methods to demonstrate the story in a playful but engaging way. A key section is shown with the use of a flute and its different parts – inventive, amusing physicality used in such a way that there is no mistaking the meaning.

The show makes good use of slow movement, voiceover and music. A highlight is the playing of spoons – a very low-fi way of demonstrating how we as people need music in our lives and can find a way to be inventive in producing it if we really want. The playing is particularly good and the ticket price is worth it to see the skill involved in this alone. The musical numbers are humorous and help to pick up storylines.

The idea behind the show is not a new one; however what this show does is make you think much more than you expect after it has ended. There is a great deal that seems surface level commentary until reflecting on it afterwards and realising that there is a discovery or deeper consideration to be aware of. It is child’s play on the one hand, but with the adult revelation of human nature on the other.

Mars Actually runs @ 19:00 @ Assembly Roxy on 24 & 26/08/17. Running time I hour 5 mins. The Jurassic Parks runs on alternative nights.

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