Recursion

Patrick Robertson
Olsson Theatre
C soco

Recursion examines how the mind adapts to trauma, be it physical or emotional. It is a look into the concept of what makes us who we are; all the events of our lives combine to get us to where and what we are at any given moment.

A man, Patient, suffering from amnesia and in hospital, is trying to discover who he is. He feels that something bad has happened that has got him here. His self-prescribed therapy is playwriting. He doesn’t know why he writes the characters, relationships and story that he does but is compelled to

The doctor and another patient aid him, as do the characters that he writes. His memory is not lost, it’s just locked away waiting for him to break down the wall around it.

Starkly written, acted and directed, this company holds our attention even though the structure strives for balance. This seems to be the year of the psychological play (Donna Disco, Perffect, Still Life). This subject would normally be out of the reach of artists so young. The direction feels a little self-conscious in the beginning. There’s an almost Brechtian quality in that we are not allowed a sentimental judgment. Robertson wants us to examine the logic, the details, rather than the emotional impact and reaction. What are we if not the sum of all of our life?

Recursion defines Fringe theatre. Done with loads of talent and small budget, it merely suggests an environment which the big boys, once this moves into a professional venue, will fully flesh out but hopefully not loose its juice.

Reviewer: Catherine Lamm