1157 Performance Group, Seen and Not Seen

Review in Issue 17-1 | Spring 2005

This small venue nestles in the Suburbs of Maidenhead; surprising therefore that Norden Farm should house 1157, an ‘experimental performance group’? In this piece they attempt to explore their self-professed identity crisis. 1157 show distinct influences of Artaud and post-modernity: aural assault of the audience, the use of personal experience as content and the preponderance of multimedia. With this in mind, 1157 should be an exciting and dynamic prospect, but at the moment they fall short of expectations. The stage is quartered by white-curtains; resonances of psychiatric treatment abound, further enhanced by the introspective, at times self obsessed, ramblings of the characters. Referencing personal experience is not an instant recipe for success and this piece lacks the irony or crafting of other ‘confessionals’. The variety of multimedia techniques, from doubling live action to quoting on array of film extracts, within the visual montage that they seem to favour, allows for one or two interesting compositions of the mise-en-scene – Kate Hargreaves dancing to camera in just high heels and underwear while inscribing her body with lipstick, and montages of TV-relayed confessionals. However, for the most part it just proves repetitive and disheartening, often because the construction of the concepts are uneven in their realisation. This is clearest in the lacklustre and derivative physical theatre sequences. 1157 show promise in the tenacity with which they have constructed their interface with the technology. It is just they need to spend more time developing the content with which they are working. Somewhere within this show is 45 minutes of interesting material, unfortunately a sledgehammer is needed to pry it out.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. Sep 2004

This article in the magazine

Issue 17-1
p. 27