What if I told you that Adolf Hitler was going to do a reading of Mein Kampf for a small audience, offering you tea and biscuits while you sit together and discuss his ideology? Now imagine, for a moment, that you've never heard of Osama Bin Laden. You have no preconceived notions or information about this fellow, he's just a man you haven't met before welcoming you into a theatre to have a conversation. I realise this isn't the simplest thing to do, considering that many of us have extremely strong feelings towards him. The attack on the twin towers, now infamously known as 9/11, is something that will be spoken about for generations to come. Al-Qaeda and Bin Laden are synonymous with terrorism, we have been taught to hate them as they only wish to do harm to anyone who gets in their way.
Now imagine if you knew none of that. One of the most difficult things to do in any situation is to see both sides of a story, to weigh each of the parties’ actions evenly and decide who made the more rational choice. Here we are offered a peek at the other side of an incredibly sensitive subject - we meet the man behind the curtain.
Sam Redway is Osama Bin Laden and the lead in this one man show. His performance is genuinely superb, he possesses a magnetism and charisma that requires you to watch his every move. He isn't in costume. He has a few very simple props. He's a young handsome British gentleman, blonde haired and blue eyed - not quite who you'd expect to be playing this role but he does it with grace and agility. That is just one of the many things that make this show so powerful and unique. Redway and his writing partner/director Toby Tyrrell-Jones have somehow managed to make this monster accessible. They figured out how to introduce you to a person, not a boogeyman you fear. Here he's just a man telling you about his life, his family, his hopes and dreams, and explaining how and why things came about the way they did. I can say in earnest that I never thought I'd care to learn more about this terrorist, however this show did something most cannot even dream of achieving - it made me think. Moreover it made me identify with someone that I can now look at as a human. You must walk in with an open mind and you must be willing to listen. If you do this, you will experience one of the finest pieces of theatre on the Fringe.