Adelaide Fringe 2020: COLD WAR

When: 28 Feb – 15 Mar

Where: Little Theatre at RCC

How much: $23 – $33

COLD WAR begins with being given handfuls of ice by a performer in a creepy mask, followed by the shouted instruction for the audience to get on the stage and dance, with music blaring. Safe to say this introduction is rather a shock to the system, and an extreme way to begin a show. For some in the audience, it may have alienated them from immersing or relaxing into the performance, but for me I found it broke the ice (pun intended). 

The set is donned with hand-painted black symbols and slogans such as ‘UTOPIA’, ‘FREE JULIAN ASSANGE’, and ‘SABOTAGE’, an homage to their punk background. The performance company, Doppelgangster, is known for transforming untraditional spaces with performances that question contemporary issues in an unconventional way.

Climate change activists, Tobias Manderson-Galvin and Aquilla Sorenson share one long, sometimes hard-to-follow, discussion across a wide variety of subject matter. Jumping from one topic to the next, they share an inquisitive and suspicious perspective for those in higher power, as they question the status quo. For reasons explained in the show, moustachioed Tobias has been considered a moderate terrorist threat since 2004 by the Australian police for his protesting efforts.

COLD WAR is a politically charged performance, as the activist pair speak against big media corporations, and the importance of the dire nature of the slowly deteriorating climate. The performance is punctuated by songs screaming about subjects ranging from the sinking of the Titanic to Facebook rhetoric.

During the performance, the crowd are handed bowls of shaved ice to eat that has been coloured black, what could be classified as a gothic snow cone. It’s never explicitly explained why this is done; it’s just handed out with no apparent significance.

This performance will certainly quench your thirst for some WTF theatre this festival season, I suggest going in ready to throw yourself into the performance headfirst.

3 out of 5 stars.

Milly Farmer

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