Ticketmaster Summer in Stages

The Woman and the Canvas

Theatre Re and Fourth Monkey

The Woman and the Canvas

In the empty space of theSpace Triplex's main space, an artist named Anna stands before a blank canvas, gently cajoled by a therapist to "try something new". We are plunged into the inner turmoil of her mind as the stage is filled by a seemingly endless parade of figures, archetypes and representations of the fragmented memories, ideas and thoughts spinning through her mind.

It's like a fever dream, as the movement, percussing beats and flurries of movement build and build, telling a strangely abstracted narrative, touching on her childhood sadnesses, moments of snatched romance, bitter emnities and fears in a sometimes feral display and cacophany of thrumming bodies.

Fourth Monkey and Theatre RE have plundered the artistic depths and strengths of their respective companies to create a dazzling display of storytelling that is comprehensible through the throng of the thirty or so performers who crowd the dancefloor, flitting and arcing across one another in a beautiful ballet of joyful madness, which can't fail to amaze.

The Woman and the Canvas is exquisitely formed and perfectly executed, a fitting tribute to the companies involved, as well as a meditation on art that can be felt by anyone who has felt the trembling terror of a blank page.

Reviewer: Graeme Strachan