The Paradise Project
Conceived and devised by Jorge Andrade, José Capela, Alexander Kelly, Chris Thorpe & Rachael Walton
Third Angel and Mala Voadora
Northern Stage at Summerhall
One of the greatest strengths but also weaknesses of the Fringe is its ability to promote the self-indulgently obscure.
In artistic terms, too often for comfort one can be confronted with the emperor’s new clothes. The uninitiated will find themselves watching performance artists saying and doing things which, unless they understand the hidden random rules that the artists have set for their private games, will inevitable seem tedious and pointless.
There will almost certainly be some for whom The Paradise Project justifies its title.
Others will watch a pair of actors building a space using techniques learned from flat pack furniture stores and then expressing views that are the mental equivalents.
The closest description might be to imagine that the last two contestants on Big Brother are theoretical logicians who feel a need to compete conceptually. Worse, they oblige innocents to sit and observe their musings for an hour.
The discussions are punctuated by readings from the words of others, which do not have any obvious connection with the other admittedly unconnected discussions as they seek paradise (one presumes).
The ending rebuilds the structure in smaller dimensions, presumably threatening that the show could continue into perpetuity.
Reviewer: Philip Fisher