Jungle

Jungle by the Bernese company Pink Mama under the direction of Slawek Bendraf and Dominik Krawiecki, purports to be about post-colonialism and in particular who survives but how does it relate to post-colonialim?

There are moments of fun, few and far between, but don't say you weren't warned.

Search me. This tedious, unimaginative show strives to be a semi-surrealistic and absurdist dance/drama but fails spectacularly.

Set in an unspecified jungle, in post-apocalyptic times where humanity has been destroyed except for our four performers, this scenario will remind British viewers at least of the TV show I'm a Celebrity. Get me out of Here, except that here the four do not have to undergo humiliating and revolting ordeals like eating maggots but instead they are informed by an evil Asian overlord portrayed on film that they must dance or die.

Cue four 'types'. Sporty, muscular Vicki, in yellow shorts, described in the programme as a 'British feminist', though what is feminist about her is unclear since all she does is obsess over Instagram. Carmen, a Venezuelan trans-woman in tight yellow skirt, black wig and twinkly red high heels, who seems happy enough ogling the audience. Billy a young 'traumatised' American soldier, though what is 'traumatised' about him is unclear apart from an unsatisfactory relationship via his monologue to microphone addressing a lover we do not meet, nor know if he/she responds. Finally. Theresa wearing a Quaker-like peasant dress with head-scarf, a 'lost' missionary who is the only character who successfully inhabits her designated character, expressing disorientation with compulsive jerks and increasingly abandoned movements as a gradual break-down of her disciplined behaviour as missionary escalates. This reviewer warmed to her, particularly when she lusts over an ice cream Vicki is tauntingly eating.

All four flail their arms about and jump about on the spot rather a lot and the only interesting dance is when Carmen divests herself of her clothes down to underpants, including jettisoning the wig revealing a bald head, and Billy strips off his shirt, (presumably as wild as he gets) and the two perform a strange 'courtship' routine.

If you've already bought a ticket, you may as well go. There are moments of fun, few and far between, but don't say you weren't warned.

Reviews by Stephanie Green

Festival Theatre

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★★★★
King's Theatre

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★★
King's Theatre

Love Cycle: OCD Love

★★★★
The Studio

Hocus Pocus

★★
Summerhall

Taiwan Season: Once Upon a Daydream

★★★★
Quaker Meeting House

Tibetan Monks Sacred Dance

★★★★

Performances

Location

The Blurb

Pink Mama Theatre questions what colonialism means today and to what extent it continues to shape our post-colonial world with its inhabitants. Who controls the world today: the colonialist or the colonized? Our four heroes are Vicky, a British feminist, Carmen, a Venezuelan transgender woman, Theresa, a lost missionary and Billy, a young traumatised American soldier. They meet in an unknown place. Humankind has vanished from the surface of the earth. As the leader of a young utopian nation appears, the four characters are invited to join her, considering one rule: Either dance, or die.