Review: Summit, Shoreditch Town Hall - a disappointing view from the top
Repeated phrases become vacuous in their repetition suggesting that the political narrative has similarly become empty.
Ten minutes into Summit and I'm irritated.
It's not the woman loudly crunching on her supper next to me although that is annoying, rather the fact that on stage the same point is being made over and over again.
'Fast forward' my brain screams as the setting for the story is described with pleasant customer service smiles for the umpteenth time.
Standing in front of a music stand with a copy of the script, the pages of which are turned with great drama, three performers outline the structure of the play and ask us to imagine three scenarios in the past, present and future.
Repetition but to what effect?
All revolve around an important summit where the lights inexplicably went out. Just to emphasise the point the lights of the auditorium are turned out.
Repetition is Summit's main performance tool, sometimes the same piece of narrative is delivered in three different languages by the performers: Alesha Chaunte, Nadia Anim and Jamie Rea - the latter performs with exceptional expression in sign language.
In a future landscape, we are told about a utopian democracy where the environment, economy and society is in a healthy shape, free from prejudice and inequality.
The past paints a bleak picture of the world on the brink of catastrophe warning of the need for major change.
Repeated phrases become vacuous in their repetition suggesting that the political narrative has similarly become empty and ineffectual.
Perhaps it's power comes from coincidence, being performed at the same time the UN issued dire warnings about climate change and the need for a serious and concerted collective action.
Otherwise, it feels lost even losing the audience who applauded the end one act too early.
It has a run time of 50 minutes and I'm giving it a disappointing ⭐️⭐️.
You can see Summit it at Shoreditch Town Hall until 19 October.
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