I Hope My Heart Goes First (4 stars)

This article is from 2011

I Hope My Heart Goes First

Remarkable young company delves into matters of the heart

If you want to know what it feels like to watch this show, you could do worse than to listen to the song from whose lyrics it takes its title – Cardiff indie-poppers Los Campesinos’ ‘We Are Beautiful, We Are Doomed’ – a four-minute scrunched-up ball of cynicism and bounce, self-consciousness and devil-may-care recklessness, spat out cliché and riveting, unadorned frankness. Length aside, all of the above applies to this show about matters of the heart from Glasgow’s Junction 25, now much fêted makers of devised theatre about the world as real teenagers see it.

The company was born out of a desire to see young people represented in the contemporary performance world, and the result is a performance possessed of a rare naturalness and ease. It has a workshoppy feel too – the same sequences are repeated over and again with subtle differences, people butt in when someone’s getting carried away, and a light-hearted camaraderie underlies the whole thing.

This is a show about the heart, and it runs the gamut from physical sequences portraying a young couple’s magnetic push and pull, to a profound monologue about maternal love, to facts about the physiology of the organ, to liberal (and gleeful) use of squashed tomatoes. The performers take knowing swipes at teenagers and their ways – and why not, when everyone else can and does – and neatly skewer the clichés from film and music that come to stand in for how we really feel, at the same time offering a tip of the hat to the way they help us work out exactly that.

Characterised most of all by remarkable insight, keen wit and youthful energy, I Hope My Heart Goes First contains truths about growing up that anyone who’s tried it can relate to, and crucially reminds us that it’s a process that we’re all, to some extent, still clumsily engaged in.

St George’s West, 225 7001, until 16 Aug, 2pm, also 24 Aug, 8.30pm, £10 (£8).

I Hope My Heart Goes First

  • 4 stars

‘Pure joy … beautiful and brand-new’ ★★★★ (Scotsman). Fresh from sell-out shows in London and Norway, Glasgow’s dynamic 20-strong company of teenage performance-makers explore the curious workings of the human heart, from love to cardiac arrest, in this energetic and life affirming piece. ‘There’s engaging freshness…


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