[20040022] Banging Cymbal, Clanging Gong

Banging Cymbal, Clanging Gong

Barbarian Productions @ Rumours

7:30pm, Mon 23 Feb 2004

Score: 9

Short Review: Delightfully Conflicted

Reluctantly coming onstage as a coke-spewing punk, to the tune of Sid Vicious’ rendition of “My Way”, kiwi Jo Randerson delivers a performance that is comic, touching, and occassionally revolting. After attacking her performance techo for not cutting the musical intro appropriately, she speaks for the first time – in a delicious accent that seems equal parts French, Scottish and Nordic.

Randerson is a Barbarian, a bastard – and proud of it. Her off-the-cuff descriptions of the Barbarian way of life are both funny and tragic, and all the while it is evident that she longs for more. She gradually reveals a refinement that fills her with joy, yet abhors her – for it is the antithesis of that which she was raised with. With delicate glasses, the piano-playing, Keats-quoting classically-punked character is a wonderfully conflicted character.

The introduction – and loss – of her loves puts everything into stark perspective. We leave the theatre knowing full well we have met a sad, tragic character who has had to fight everyone – even herself – every step of her life, and will continue to do so. And yet, in her feisty humour there is hope.

Wonderful stuff. It’s just sad that there was an audience of only 8 people who caught this performance.

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