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Review: Waterloo at The Blue Room

Review By: Tatum Stafford

As we entered the Blue Room’s studio space on Saturday night, the audience seemed immediately on edge. In the space were up to one hundred blue balloons floating across the floor, with one floating pink balloons attached to a remote controlled car. Little did we know how on edge we’d be for the remainder of this electric performance piece.

The protagonist, host and storyteller for the night is performance artist Bron, a self-proclaimed quasi-vegan who votes for the Greens, who met and fell in love with a man dubbed Sergeant Troy – a militaristic, Margaret Thatcher-loving Tory voter. Throughout the night, Bron tells us the story of how and when they met, ways they would stay in contact long distance – all before she details an intriguing discovery she makes about him after an intensive Google search.

The show makes great use of multimedia, as well as some alarming DIY science experiments for shock effect. At the start, end and throughout the show, a video of Bron and a companion going paintballing is shown on a projector, serving a great metaphor for the militaristic and traditionalist storyline progressed through the Sergeant character.

As for the balloons, there’s a portion of the performance wherein Bron stabs at balloons with a blindfold on, and there’s even a finale section where she enters a giant balloon herself. And as for the science experiment mentioned above, there’s an interesting moment with a pack of ping pong balls and a rubbish bin – but I won’t say too much more. But, as a result, there’s an underlying pressure and tension to this entire performance that serves to amplify Bron’s story. This serves the performance extremely well, and provides an excellent subtext to the social and political issues that are raised throughout.

Bron is an extremely accomplished performance artist, so there is no surprise that this performance is captivating and incredibly meaningful. A morality quiz the audience participate in halfway through is a testament to her creativity and eagerness to hear and become involved in other people’s belief systems and thoughts about cultural issues. Hearing her story and how some of her beliefs have been challenged throughout the years only makes me want to hear much more about her interactions with people – and proves why Fringe is such a fantastic avenue of expression and exploration for a range of performers and creatives.

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All opinions and thoughts expressed within reviews on Theatre Travels are those of the writer and not of the company at large.


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