I See Red (4 stars)

Review by Amanda Lancaster.

“My,what  big  ears  you  have!”

“All  the  better  to  hear  you  with.”

“My  what  big  eyes  you  have!”

“All  the  better  to  see  you  with.”

“And  my  oh  my  what  big  teeth  you  have!”

“All  the  better  to  EAT  you  with!”

And  just  like the  wolf  had  eaten  little  red, so  too  did  the  audience  devour  I See Red.  We  all  know  the  classic  fairy  tale, Little Red Riding Hood –  or  at  least  a  version  of  it  but  none quite  so  like  the  patchwork  of  interpretations  that  make  up  the  performance, I See Red.

In  a  beautifully    woven  together  hour  we  a  treated  to  a  seamless  string  of  entertainment  by  Western Australian Academy of Performing Art’s (WAAPA)  3rd  year  performance  making  students. Consisting  of  9  short  re-interpretations  and  re-imaginings  of  the  classic  fairy  story,  the   audience  is  treated  to  a  night  of  experimental  adult  puppetry  and  visual  performances,  each   of    which  takes  on  its  own  cleverly  thought  out  creative  demonstration  on the  basic cautionary  tale  that  is  Little Red Riding Hood.  With  gorgeously  witty  metaphors  cloaked  in  red,  each  creative  aesthetic  choice  has  been  made  carefully  by  the  students  themselves  and  it  is   this  artistic  voice  that  the  audience  so  willingly  devours.

The  audience looks  on  with  big  eyes  and   pricked  ears  trying  to  untangle  the  magic,  but  the performers  create  such  a  believable  reality  on  stage  between  such  skilled  visual  manipulations  and  the  wonderfully      subtle  use   of  use  of  sound  and  light  that  we  will  happily  believe  there  are  no  strings  attached. The  idea  of  taking  a  a  children’s  cautionary  tale,  a  fairy  story and  adapting  it  to  that  of  a   show  for  the  entertainment  and  intellectual  enjoyment  of  a  theatre  full  of  adults  is  a  bold   and  unique  idea.  But  the  16  performing  artists  have  done  so  with  such  a  beautiful   sophistication, that I See Red  is  not  only  just  well  received  but  leaves  you  with  a  definite   hunger  for  more.

In  a  modern  world  of  forward  fast-paced  momentum  I See Red  serves  not  only  as  a   reminder  of  what  predatory  pitfalls  can  hide  amongst  society’s  seemingly simple  pleasures, but  also  reminds  us  of  just  exactly  how  exciting  and  edgy  the  art  of  visual  theatre,  puppetry   and  object  manipulation  can  be.

I See Red played at Spare Parts Puppet Theatre, performed by 3rd Year WAAPA students from 19th – 20th May 2016.