The Believers Are But Brothers | Javaad Alipoor & Kirsty Housley

The Believers Are But Brothers | Javaad Alipoor & Kirsty HousleyImage – Jack Offord

Upon arrival audience members are asked to download and install "Whatsapp" an encrypted messenger program. You are all added to a group where you can chat among yourselves along with the performer and the characters he portrays throughout the piece which was a nice touch. There are so many things I am an avid fan of in this work, the gaming, the witty memes, the well researched content, the interactive element, the soundtrack, the lighting, the poetic and considered writing and the portal it provided into the online universe.

However the fact they were all happening at once or in close succession actually drew away from the stories and made it harder to engage with. For instance the "Whatsapp" addition worked in some ways but for everything it added I personally felt it took away twice as much. Many important plot points and moments got lost in the stream of messages (similar to what happens in most chat rooms) and notifications from an entire audience of mobile phones not on silent did not help. My heart went out to the elderly couple beside me who did not know how to open or operate the application from the start but were too modest to look on my phone to compensate.

Simply put I wanted to spend more time with each of the different characters, their story lines and the group chat. The brutality of the internet and the groups that form behind the anonymity of it are large scary behemoths in and of themselves. That could easily be discussed deeply and at length for longer than 70mins no interval. The only reprieve from the onslaught of information was meta engagement from the actor in the moments between which was welcome and perhaps the most engaging aspect.

In regards to the form and trans media approach, there is not enough of this type of theatre in the circuit, more please.

Arts House and Melbourne Knowledge Week present
The Believers Are But Brothers
by Javaad Alipoor & Kirsty Housley

Venue: Arts House | North Melbourne Town Hall, 521 Queensberry Street, North Melbourne VIC
Dates: 22 – 25 May 2019
Tickets: $35 – $25



Related Articles

What Girls Are Made Of | Cora Bisset What Girls Are Made Of | Cora Bisset
A deeply engaging performer, Bisset has a powerhouse voice and stand out stage presence. Photo – Mihaela Bodlovic and Niall Walker This year’s Melbourne Festival line up is an eclectic mix of...
Black is the New White | Melbourne Theatre Company Black is the New White | Melbourne Theatre Company
Black is the New White is an absolute joy to watch. Left – Geoff Morell and Tuuli Narkle. Cover – Geoff Morrell and Tony Briggs. Photos – Jeff Busby Two houses, both alike in dignity…...

Most read Melbourne reviews

Anthem | Melbourne International Arts Festival

There’s a great deal happening in Anthem, a cross section of humanity meets and the differing...

What Am I Supposed To Do? (WAISTD)

Being both participant and audience forces a level of engagement that is physical and immediate,...

Quite Drunk, Very Jesus-y

Theology is a sensitive topic, it can both bring people together and completely polarise them.

Society | After Dark Theatre

If you like flips, tricks, circus routines, song and dance then this is the party to attend.

The Beautiful Game | Manilla Street Productions

Producer and Director Karen Jemison has assembled an incredibly present, intelligent and...

Sign up for our newsletter

* indicates required