Reykjavik (4 stars)

This article is from 2010


Get on the next flight

Not one for the participation-averse, but any production where you get to dress as a Ghostbuster is fine by me. Flippancy aside, this is something a bit special. The unpromising surroundings of the Bongo Club are transformed into an evocative multi-sensory experience creating the world of Rejkyavik, both a concrete and a personalised city, as a place ultimately far from home. The action experiments with notions of sight and blindness – the blindness (or blankness) of idealistic youth alongside the functional blindness of memory, the linguistic blindness of the foreigner and the snow-blindness of a claustrophobic world of pure white.

Importantly, the audience are not onlookers but co-opted into the story as bit-players. Costumed in identical boiler suits and prodded about the set, it’s a little unsettling for those accustomed to passive theatre-going, but writer and central performer Jonathan Young deals admirably with our nerves. Trapped in a world of inescapable fractals opening out and leading nowhere, he inhabits his role as Y completely (unsurprisingly, as it’s autobiographical) as he relates the fallout of the incompatible lovers engaged in an unwise hangover from a holiday romance. Disconcerting, absorbing and very moving.

The Bongo Club, 557 2827, until 29 Aug, 12.45pm, £10 (£8).


  • 4 stars

Imagine being lost in a foreign country. Bright light and fog distorting your view. Whatever possessed you to come here? Part travelogue, part detective story, 'Reykjavik' is a journey through a city of extremes - mysterious, absurd and beautiful - in search of a half-forgotten love affair. Created in collaboration with…

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