Stolen Kisses, One - Or Two?

Review in Issue 11-2 | Summer 1999

The problem with experiments – like feeding meat to herbivorous cattle – is that they often don't produce the desired results. One presumes that Stolen Kisses' experimental performance piece One – Or Two? is meant to either entertain or inform or stimulate the imagination. Unfortunately, it does none of these things.

In their publicity material, the company describes their work as 'exploring the role of performer as witness to an existing everyday poetry’. This is a worthy endeavour, and haven't we all witnessed everyday poetry on the 38 bus or at the local launderette? But this company seems to be tone deaf.

The performance begins with a man and a woman facing opposite sides of an audience which is split in two halves. For what seems like an interminable length of time, the man raises his arm as the woman crouches. These empty gestures are accompanied by pleasant background music. There is a blackout. A tall actor walks across the stage with his face painted blue, looking like a stretched Smurf. Muslin curtains are drawn across the stage. The woman sits on the floor, as a man dressed as a wolf/bear peeks from behind the curtain. Later the woman is sitting between the curtains when suddenly a bucketful of ping-pong balls fall on her head. And so it goes on.

Actually, the descent of the ping-pong balls did make me think. They made me remember it was a rollover and that I'd forgotten to buy a lottery ticket.

All in all, the piece reminded me of something that might have been produced by students in the first year of a drama training. But they wouldn't be charging people £7 to suffer it.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. Apr 1999

This article in the magazine

Issue 11-2
p. 20