The Great Downhill Journey of Little Tommy (3 stars)

This article is from 2015

The Great Downhill Journey of Little Tommy

credit: Basiel Debrock

Frantically energetic theatre piece told through live music and drawings

Billing itself as 'a coming of age performance told in songs and live drawings', Little Tommy takes an unexpected approach. Suddenly, a frantic man puts a megaphone to a mic and starts screaming 'my son is gone', while the rest of the band play extremely loud metal. While this happens, a woman stands behind a screen, drawing a picture featuring everything from a skeleton-emblazoned liquor bottle to a giant foot descending a hill.

The music and images combine to tell the story of what happens when young Tommy leaves his home on the hill and runs into people that, for different reasons, don't live there anymore. As he meets new characters, the style of music changes, and it becomes clear that this piece is experimenting with what degree a musical performance can be considered theatre.

Often, it doesn't feel like theatre at all, and though interesting, it's also challenging to watch. Following the very basic storyline is a task in itself, as it is diluted by the mish-mash of things happening on stage. That said, the performers, notably Jonas Vermeulen and Boris Vanseveren, bring the right amount of talent and enthusiasm to the piece, and if you can't experiment at the Fringe, where can you?

Summerhall, 560 1581, until 30 Aug (not 18, 25), £10 (£8).

The Great Downhill Journey of Little Tommy

  • 3 stars

Theater aan Zee and Richard Jordan Productions Tommy leaves his safe town up on the hill to see the sea. On his way he meets everyone whom for some reason isn’t allowed or doesn’t belong in the city. A journey through music history that gives the floor to the outsiders of society. Recipient of the Teater aan Zee 2015…