In one of the more enigmatic venues of this year's Fringe, I stumbled across a beautiful piece of work combining dance and physical theatre with moments of video projection. The cellar tunnels beneath the Medina Hotel, just down from the Town Hall, are in original condition. Sandstone crumbles easily from the walls. They provide a densely textured space for this solo work which seems principally to explore the interraction between the real and imagined, and the precariousness of what we hold dear.
Diane Reid, who ironically tells us she is almost fifty and too old for this, begins her piece writhing slowly along and then around the corner of an archway. She is dressed in a white, exterminator's onesie. Her costume is by-turns a skin to shed, a protector against grime, and a projector screen.
Reid bounced around this ruined room, her crumbling cocoon, letting her piece adopt a number of different forms. It is at times a very real and personal memoir, and at others, a free-wheeling, physical and mental catharsis. She sometimes plays the clown, at one point standing inches away from my face, mirroring and gently mocking my posture.
Reid improvises freely and, throughout her 30 minute piece, aims to break traditional notions of the performer/audience divide. She conveys her lessons and experiences verbally and without ceremony; she is not dealing-out wisdom, or rueing mistakes made. She seems to both experience and communicate those lessons in the moment, through her body, all at once. It is done with sensitivity and an endearing, wry humility.
Venue: Medina Treasury Tunnels
Dates: March 2 – 11, 2012
Tickets: $15.00 – $12.00
Part of the 2012 Adelaide Fringe Festival