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Grief and fluff: Tiger @OmnibusTheatre

Death is something we all will face. After all, nobody gets out of here alive. But how do you get past it when grief is all you can feel? And this is the premise of Tiger, currently playing at Omnibus Theatre . It's a fascinating exploration of the stages of grief. And with a terrific cast to take you on this journey, it's an endearing and sweet story that has you engaged from the start, wondering what will happen next.  We are introduced to Alice (Poppy Allen-Quarmby) as she gives a stand-up routine. It's not particularly funny and starts to veer into the topic of dying. Something isn't right. She used to be good at this but can't move forward. Soon, she is back in her London apartment with her partner Oli (Luke Nunn), discussing that they need to get a lodger to make ends meet.  Oli is a doctor working night shifts at the local NHS hospital. Alice is not ready to face a return to stand up or anything. So when the first potential lodger arrives (Meg Lewis), looking

Flipping hell: A Simple Space @Udderbellyfest @GOM_Circus

A Simple Space, by Australian-based circus troupe Gravity and Other Myths, is the latest round of circus offering at the Udderbelly Festival at the Southbank Centre.

Between the amazing feats of acrobatics you can hear a constant sound. The sound of heavy breathing. It is coming from the stage. This is pretty intense stuff here and the energy and sweat from the performers is audible and palpable. And in the space of the giant purple cow, where you are up close to the performers, it seems much more intense and intimate.

The title of the show suggests what is in store. There is nothing fancy but some terrific performances by the young and enthusiastic troupe as they do things that you wouldn’t think possible for the body to be able to do.

There is a segment that is a back flips competition where each performer back flips to the point of exhaustion. Watching the performers up close strain and exert to backflip again and again to the point of exhaustion, using up whatever energy reserves they have, seems like it could be considered cruelty to nice young acrobats. But it is also an impressive spectacle.

Other highlights include a rapid strip-skipping and various painful looking balancing acts on each others faces and other body parts. Audience participation is limited to throwing little coloured balls at the performers while they try to remain upside down on their hands.

While the staging may be pared back, and there are not any glitzy costumes (although there are quite a few spectacular looking bodies up there), its simplicity and live percussion accompaniment make for a slick production.

And given the spontenaity of the show (and the nature of the acrobatics) no show is probably the same and worth a look once or twice.

It is on at the Southbank Centre as part of the Udderbelly Festival until 24 May.


Production photos by Chris Herzfeld

A Simple Space Promo 2015 from Gravity & Other Myths on Vimeo.

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