For One Week Only at BAC

Published: 23 December 2004
Reporter: Peter Lathan

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In 2000, the Boyden report, and its subsequent funding injection, led to a rebirth in British regional theatre. Unfortunately, only a very small body of regional work ever makes it into central London due to the phenomenal costs involved in putting on a London show.

In February 2005, BAC aims to change this with the launch of For One Week Only, a new three week-long season that will present the work of three regional theatre companies for one-week-only runs.

"If you're a bright regional company and you want to hit London you're up against sky-high outgoings, only enough London friends to fill half a theatre for one night and the inflexible demands of London theatre managers - 'you must do three weeks otherwise the press won't come'. This explains why new regional riches are not finding their way into London," says David Jubb, BAC's artistic director.

"For One Week Only provides a supportive opportunity for three brilliant companies, with three very different shows, to hit London either for the first time or for a return visit."

The three theatre companies are Cartoon de Salvo (Surrey), Hoax (Bristol) and Uninvited Guests (Bristol). For Cartoon de Salvo, For One Week Only is an affordable way to return to BAC with their latest touring production, allowing them to build on the successes of previous BAC runs. For Hoax and Uninvited Guests the season offers the chance to build up a London fan base and to bag a kindly word from London-based media. In return, Londoners will get the chance to see the incredible work created in the shadowy world outside the M25 without going beyond zone 2.

First, Cartoon de Salvo return to BAC with their latest adventure The Chaingang Gang. Five escaped convicts, still chained together, embark on an epic quest across jungles, deserts and oceans in search of their freedom. With a trademark mix of impro, live music and inventive storytelling, The Chaingang Gang follows Cartoon de Salvo's previous hits Meat & Two Veg and Ladies & Gentlemen.

In week two, Hoax Productions presents Raw Beef (Fringe First, 2004). Two bald men in tutus navigate the claustrophobia of human relationships and suicide attempts using only a broom, a box, and a rope in a room with no doors. Al Seed and Ivan Marcos present a high-octane physical performance full of nonsense babble that results in a highly surreal comedy and very real human drama about emotional descent.

The final week of For One Week Only presents Schlock by Uninvited Guests. Mixing real acts of violence and pints of fake blood, Schlock explores bodily trauma and fears about accidents or violent attacks through the erotics of TV hospital dramas and horror flicks. This disconcerting night of theatre is a darkly comic response to today's media saturated culture.

For One Week Only is from 1st to 20th February 2005