Posts Tagged ‘vikram and the vampire

07
May
12

Vikram and the Vampire

Vikram and the Vampire

Zen Zen Zo

The Old Museum

3rd May – 19th May 2012

Reviewed by Meredith Mclean

There is one thing I must confess before I say anything about Zen Zen Zo’s production of Vickram and The Vampire. I am not a dancer. I’m not even quite sure I can muster an awkward jig in the public eye let alone on stage. At least not since the day I tripped on my own foot and flailed down a flight of stairs amongst many of my peers circa 2008. But I don’t resent those who know how to command a space with movement. Instead I admire them. To be graceful or fierce just by stirring the body is an art and it makes me smile when I see the right people out there doing exactly that.

Vickram and The Vampire is a fantastic concept for physical theatre. It overwhelms the audience with tales of the ancient Hindu myths. King Vickram is proud, but not entirely wise. Try as he may to take the vampire in a tree he is instead faced with terror in the cunning vampire’s tales.

Laughter is to be expected. But so is astonishment. What is presented to us didn’t rise from any frivolous origin or light piece of writing. Vickram and The Vampire is an adaption, and a wonderful one at that, of studies from a different era. What was originally titled The King and The Corpse is a commiseration between East and West (something familiar to Zen Zen Zo), brewing intricate tales reflecting on the eternal conflict with the forces of evil. It was written by Heinrich Zimmer, a man often quoted as bringing eastern art to western culture and a good friend of the iconic Carl Jung.

Upon linking all of this as it is transcribed to Zen Zen Zo’s stage the parallels are by no means accidental. These collaborators aren’t lost amongst the many theatres Brisbane has to offer. Zen Zen Zo is distinct, vivid and in a wonderfully weird way imposing. Their choreography draws from the culture of Asian dance-theatre bringing a strange feeling of being transported across continents without leaving your seat. These guys perform with energy that I feel needs to be described as drastic. There is urgency in their movement that makes me excited to be there. This is physical theatre in a constantly palpable state of cresting and falling like waves, or beating like drums. You mustn’t question the scheme of Vickram and The Vampire. All you can do is take in each movement of each moment.

The ensemble cast who bring this play to life can be a kaleidoscopic, catastrophic wonder. Then there is hush as they use their bodies to create immaculate emotion if there is such a thing. They move like liquid. As water fills a cup these performers fill each intricate space to portray a role on the stage.

The collective force of the ensemble cast falls into line under the direction of Michael Futcher. I am a firm believer; you could even call me a Futcher Fan. I’ve seen his directorial work in The Wishing Well and The Kursk; which I would gladly see either of them again. In both the aforementioned plays and now Vickram and The Vampire, I have consistently seen his understanding of space and light. His extensive credits in directing roles as well as acting roles only reconfirms this for me.

At first I was simply going to recommend you see this fantastic example of physical theatre that Zen Zen Zo has to offer. However, May 12th is their Gala Night. Zen Zen Zo is inviting you to not only see Vickram and the Vampire but also share a glass of champagne with the director and cast. Take this chance to learn more about the undertones of the play and what happens behind the scenes. If you miss out on this performance I assure you that you will regret it.

14
Mar
12

how much do we love pozible?

If you haven’t come across it already, pozible.com.au is a crowdfunding platform for creative projects. It’s how our friends at Joymas Creative partly funded the premiere of Megan Shorey’s original work, One in Seven. It’s how the Melbourne Cabaret Festival is able to continue (fully funded in under 48 hours)!

There are other crowdfunding ventures but we see a LOT of original work that interests us on Pozible. And it seems that the projects are more quickly and more widely shared across social media, meaning of course, that the artists are able to raise the required funds sooner. (There’s nothing scientific in that statement, it’s just what we’ve noticed.)

Pozible from Pozible on Vimeo.

The latest project we feel is important to support is Zen Zen Zo’s upcoming production Vikram and the Vampire

Adapted from the award-winning production of The King and the Corpse, and based on a series of fantastical Hindu tales, Vikram and the Vampire is a magical night of comedy, horror and dynamic physical theatre which celebrates the art of storytelling and ensemble playing.


The exciting cast includes Sandro Colarelli, Bryan Probets, Lizzie Ballinger, Chris Beckey, Liz Buchanan, Lauren Jackson, Jamie Kendall, Earl Kim and Melissa Budd.

Directed by Michael Futcher. Winner – Best Director – 2011 Matilda Awards

 

Where is the money going?
GOOD QUESTION.

Zen Zen Zo are a “not for profit” theatre company. The $3000 raised through Pozible will assist the company in covering production costs, which will greatly enhance the visual appeal of the production. Your money will go directly towards: 


– the hire of a tarkett floor for the safety of the physical performers
– costuming the entire production
– constructing the set 
– transforming the Studio space with a “Burning Ground” installation
– purchasing props for the production

Of course, you can also support the company by booking tickets and helping to spread word about the show! But be quick (opening night is already SOLD OUT)!

If you feel like this production is a cause you’d like to support, head on over to pozible.com.au and pledge any amount. While you’re there, take a look at the other projects and you’ll get a magic little glimpse at the sort of work getting up off the ground with the help of communities. I love this notion, of audience members and community having the option to “buy in”, essentially becoming a producer on the project. It’s a bit like Nuala’s Ireland-Ghana Children’s Project or anything else that asks you to “buy in”. If it suits you, support it. If not, do share the love by telling somebody else how easy it is for them to become a proud supporter of new Australian art!

Book online