Brighton Fringe 2008
How Do You Spell It?
Menage & The Hamilton Yarns
Venue: West Hill Community Hall, Compton Avenue
Festival: Brighton Fringe
A modern tale that sees two women far from home and on the edge of each other’s madness. A French-Brazilian performance brought together by the unique sound of the Hamilton Yarns.
How Do You Spell It?, performed in the tucked away West Hill Community Hall, was a new piece of French-Brazilian physical theatre.
Documenting the arrival of two foreign women to the UK, the play did well to communicate their shared feeling of isolation as they moved about two small areas of the stage, representing their cramped rooms in a bedsit. Synchronized movements and sections where the pair moved in opposition were used as substitutes for spoken language in an effort to create meaning and connection. However, some more ambitious choreography would have resulted in a more striking affect. The live music by Hamilton Yarns, provided a supple and responsive accompaniment to the piece, but once again could have done with a little more pep.
Moments of despair as their pair began to psychologically unravel were balanced with others of refreshing humour, as the women attempted to make themselves understood with pigeon-English. This was perhaps an area where the play could be refined and strengthened, as it was at these points where we saw a glimpse beneath the abstract that the characters came to life.
*On a side note kudos to the company for finding West Hill Community Hall, one of those unique spaces that is begging to be used far more during the Fringe Festival.