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Review: It's 'yes' or 'no' answers and The Majority rules, National Theatre

IMG_5112If you don't leave the theatre, after seeing The Majority, talking about the show and feeling challenged then you weren't really paying attention. Part stand up, part story, part morality test, comedian Rob Drummond examines democracy mixing his own story (with added dramatic licence, he admits) and a series of live votes.

As you enter the auditorium you are given a small key pad (pictured) and, during the show, are invited to press one for 'yes' and two for 'no' in relation to a series of statements. The results are displayed moments later on screens as percentages and the majority rules.

The statements on which your opinion is sought start off with basics to establish the make up of the audience and rules (should we allow latecomers, for example) moving on to re-runs of recent referendum votes and a variety of moral dilemmas. Some relate to variations of a scenario involving a deadly runaway train heading towards a group of workmen, others relate to the story Rob Drummond tells.

His story is about a random encounter he had the morning after the Scottish independence referendum and how that took him on a journey across Scotland and into the world of protests, activism, freedom of speech and the far right.

It dovetails nicely with the statements you vote on and sometime you get to vote on aspects of the story that determine what happens next.

Over the course of 90 minutes you will agonise over your choices and hold a mirror up to yourself, question your rationale and that of your fellow audience members. It is theatre that challenges your views and makes you look at democracy and freedom of speech in a different way. It is also very entertaining with plenty of laughs along the way.

This is great interactive theatre and a show that I'm intrigued to see again to see how different the voting is. There are certain statements I'd choose to respond to differently now I know how thing could have turned out. I'm giving it five stars and it's on the Dorfman stage at the National Theatre until 28 August.