1984 (4 stars)

This article is from 2012


EmpathEyes Theatre's slick, sexy and terrifying adaptation of Orwell’s dystopian tale

Opening with a stream of perfectly timed choreography, half-naked bodies and live music, it’s clear from the outset that this is no generic adaptation of George Orwell’s dystopian tale.

Winston Smith (Theo Gordon) is a man on the verge of rebellion against the totalitarian figure Big Brother who has re-shaped the modern world. Encouraged by the slippery O’Brien and fellow party member Julia, he sets about trying to break free of the oppressive regime he is trapped in.

Helped along by expertly placed audio-visual effects (the live orchestra is a rarity and a treat) this contemporary staging is so polished and precise it could almost be the product of Big Brother himself. Given the subject matter of 1984 there’s the potential for melodrama, but the cast often works in whispers rather than screams to greater dramatic effect. The whole ensemble never misses a beat, ensuring an engaging and energetic show that has the audience at its fingertips.

Slick, sexy and utterly terrifying, this has to be one of the highlights of the Fringe so far.

Zoo, 662 6892, until 27 Aug (not 15, 22), 6.40pm, £8 (£5).


  • 4 stars

Winston has had enough. He has had enough of the telescreens, the Thought Police and the Doublespeak. He has had enough of Big Brother… With live music, multimedia projections and pulsating physicality, we enter the dark and oppressive world of Oceania. Every movement and emotion is captured, recorded and tracked as…

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