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The Vaults, London

The Various Lives of Infinite Nullity imagines the afterlives of its three protagonists following their gruesome suicides. One is a sexual deviant unable to escape his feelings of loneliness; another, a motivational speaker plagued by a sense of their own inadequacy; the last, a mother who feels judged by her own children.

Lecoq trained Clout Theatre create a surreal and discordant universe in which scenes from the lives of these individuals are interspersed with afternoon tea (from beyond the grave) and murder. If there is a narrative through line, it’s difficult to discern. Instead it seems like a fragmented meditation on anxiety and death. And one that paints a bleak picture – suggesting that this is a domain for self absorbed neurotics.

Visually, it’s a bit unoriginal and a little bit sloppy. Tarpaulin, strip lighting and animal masks seem to have become lazy shorthand for experimentation (I’m not sure I’ve seen a show at The Yard without all three). And this posturing like we’re all just too cool to bother with staging things in a tidy and presentable way is TBQH a little irritating and a little passé.

But all that is redeemed by three very weird and watchable performances. And by characters and scenarios that are nuanced and engaging.

  • Drama
  • Clout Theatre
  • Vault Festival 2016
  • The Vaults, London
  • Until 27th February 2016
  • Review by Luke Davies
  • 18 February 2016

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