The Caravan (4 stars)

This article is from 2008.

The Caravan

Impressive site specific verbatim piece

One of modern Britain’s cruel realities is that, while a US presidential hopeful dominates front page news, the continued homelessness of thousands of UK citizens after the 2007 floods, has gone largely ignored. When this situation is mentioned, it is usually in hindsight or as a symbolic baptism for Gordon Brown’s first days in power, rather than in the context of one of the worst humanitarian disasters on mainland Britain in decades.

It is precisely this indifference that gives The Caravan its power. While we are used to collectively shrugging our shoulders at the misfortune beamed into living rooms from abroad, being confronted by domestic misery serves as a sharp jolt.

Set in a tiny trailer and composed of transcripts of interviews with ‘flood victims’ (a term some of the protagonists are at first bemused by), The Caravan has chosen voices from a wide spectrum of social classes and backgrounds, and thus serves as an intriguing portrait of modern Britain. One man laments the damage to his spacious country house, while a woman rails at the indifference of Hull City Council. The choice of a site specific setting works so well as a backdrop for some of the excellent acting that, at times, you feel you’re in the background of a documentary.

Pleasance Courtyard, 556 6550, until 25 Aug (not 19), times vary, £8.50 (£8).

The Caravan

  • 4 stars

Theatre company Look Left, Look Right win the prize for bizarre venues this year. The Caravan is set in a tiny caravan and focuses on the plight of the 2,200 British households still living in temporary housing after the floods of 2007. 'Part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe'

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