Intense story of loss and secrets
This article is from 2011.
Focusing on a bereaved father and daughter in the 1980s, Death Song is engaging and impeccably performed. Juan, a single father following the death of his wife, is a Mexican immigrant in America struggling to get work and keep his daughter safe, when a new love finds its way into his life. Juan’s daughter attempts to deal with the emotional fallout of seeing her father move on with another women, and her own confusing adolescence – but things are not quite what they seem, with the true gravity of the family’s situation seeping out over the course of the play.
Backed by a multi-instrumentalist creating ambient sounds with loop and effects pedals, the actors multi-task, adding sounds to complement mimed actions happening onstage – tooth brushing, television, cooking. The small cast make the meagre floor space operate as many sets at once, certain characters freezing in order to allow action to continue in an implied alternative location. An intense, visual display.
Udderbelly’s Pasture, 0844 545 8252, until 28 Aug (not 15), 6.35pm, £10–£11 (£9–£10).