The Rest of Our Lives

Human physicality is utterly captivating – it’s why we go to the circus or the cabaret, where narrative and plot take a backseat to simple bodies, and the complex and incredible things that they do. But physicality is also usually the first place where we experience decline and frailty. This is the tension of The Rest of Our Lives, a movement-centered piece by veteran performers George Orange and Jo Fong.

We are united by the simple joys of staying in motion

Orange and Fong, only in their 50s and with background and ongoing careers in circus, dance, and cabaret, are facing a turning point in their lives, where they can no longer perform the way they used to. Anyone who has spent time in the Underbelly Circus Hub or at any of the other physical theatre, dance, and circus performances around the Fringe, can attest that that those standards feel superhuman to most of us, but nevertheless, they are experiencing a loss. What they haven’t lost, though, is the spark that magnetizes an excellent performer.

Orange’s barrel chest and Fong’s wiry muscles betray their remaining physical power, and the show is full of impressive moments. In between sequences of dance and partner acrobatics, however, they don’t shy away from their heavy breathing. They make extensive use of music, classic and contemporary, and a ticker-tape LED display to stitch sequences together. The Rest of Our Lives, like the rest of our lives, is not particularly cohesive. It loosely centers around the question of simply ‘How do we go on?’ playing back and forth between friends.

The question isn’t answered in words. Instead, the show itself seems to provide the best answer. Orange and Fong are present, vital, in a small room at Summerhall with the dedicated audiences that show up at 10:15 in the morning. We are invited to laugh – with them, not at them. We are included in their movement, in their questions and their joys, in ways that feel completely loving and unthreatening. They do try and fill the first row specifically, and there is no reason to hide from it for even the most timid audience member. We end the hour together, united by the simple joys of staying in motion.

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Reviews by Alex Bailey Dillon

Assembly George Square Gardens

Railed

★★★
Assembly Rooms

KIN

★★★
Roundabout @ Summerhall

Half-Empty Glasses

★★★
Zoo Southside

Runners

★★★★
Summerhall, Old Lab

The Rest of Our Lives

★★★
Zoo Southside

Too Pretty to Punch

★★★★★

Since you’re here…

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Mama Biashara
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Performances

Location

The Blurb

Hopefully hopeful, The Rest of Our Lives is a joyful morning dose of dance, theatre, circus and games. A cabaret of life and near death. Two middle-aged lives in an eclectic, spontaneous, predictable and random decline. Jo is an old dancer, George an old clown. International artists with 100 years of life experience between them, armed with a soundtrack of floor-fillers, a book of raffle tickets and a sprinkling of eco-friendly optimism.

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