Photos - Shauna Phoon
Dull and leaden from start to finish, Insomnia Cat Came to Stay doesn’t really tick until the frenetic last few minutes.
This one woman show about sleep deprivation is pedestrian, monotonous – very much like suffering insomnia – and wields absolutely no emotional impact despite Fleur Kilpatrick’s best efforts. Her writing fails to bind together a portrait of sleep disorders, and the individual moments of interest feel like vignettes in an incoherent whole. Kilpatrick attempts to do a great deal with very little as she endeavours to wring tension from a simple dramatic set-up.
She enters the stage in a black nightdress and fluffy slippers, sits on an armchair, opens a letter and rips it to shreds with her mouth. Why? We don’t know but the performance is intriguing even when the substance isn’t. There’s a voice over telling the audience about sleep and lack of it. Then our narrator bursts into a series of monologues and songs including; “I Can’t Get No (Satisfaction),” “Dear Prudence” and “Down Town.” But the character is completely uninvolving, the narrative disjointed for the most part, and the performance seems to reflect the confusion with the plot. It’s like a misadventure that unfolds like an incomprehensible dream.
Kilpatrick, aided by Steven Hearne’s accompanying guitar distortion, has to make the audience believe that its stuck in that cycle of lack of sleep, to make it feel, to make it care, but that’s just what the actress fails to do. There’s a certain knack with experiments in limitation but Insomnia Cat Came to Stay has already used up its nine lives way before the finale.
Quiet Little Fox Theatre presents
Insomnia Cat Came To Stay
by Fleur Kilpatrick
Director Fleur Kilpatrick
Venue: The Promethean | 116 Grote St, Adelaide
Dates/Time: 4 - 5 October, 8pm
Tickets: Full $25, Concession $18, Group 6+ $15