As of 1.52pm GMT on Friday April 27th 2012, This Show Has No Title

Daniel Kitson

Traverse 1

From 07 August 2012 to 26 August 2012

Rating: ****

Review by Philip Fisher

There are two possibilities. Possibly, to use his own word, Daniel Kitson has been “lazy” this year and half written a play, which he was then obliged to deliver to a rapt full house. Alternatively, he has effortfully created an intricate masterpiece of metatheatre.

In a massive stage space, a shaven-headed man in shorts sits at a desk with no stage lighting or props. There, he reads from a script for 80 minutes, getting breathless as while telling a self-referential story with many others wrapped up inside, closer to Charlie Kaufman’s Adaptation or Synecdoche, New York than any play.

The Daniel on stage reads out a plot apparently co-written with Jennifer Stott, featuring characters called Daniel and Jennifer and for variety, a Dan as well.

To be frank, the tale itself is pretty dull but that is not the point. Here, the medium is the message and fun comes courtesy of those flashes of verbal brilliance that characterise all of Kitson’s work and a smattering of terrific jokes.

Whatever the underlying explanation, this is an intriguing piece that is a little longer than ideal but will still draw audiences into the Traverse and ensure that they come away at the end talking avidly about the nature of the mysterious text that has been delivered for their entertainment.