I was slightly apprehensive when going to review Tribe, having seen a lot of pretentious, uninspiring, or just simply bad physical theatre and dance pieces this Fringe. However Temper Theatre have produced a truly extraordinary show, which has been the highlight of this year’s festival for me so far.

Armed with an engaging topic, an electrifying energy, and outstanding choreography, this is well worth anyone’s time.

The production is an inspired and imaginative piece, about indigenous tribal communities, which is a fascinating topic on its own. The show focuses around Ru, a boy living an unfulfilling existence of nightclubs and technology, who unknowingly is a member of a destroyed indigenous tribe. As he grows to understand his heritage, the production swells in tempo and energy, reaching a beautiful finale.

Told almost entirely through dance and movement, it is a feat in itself that this show is so coherent, using powerful sound effects, and well chosen music (any group that uses René Aubry is fantastic in my mind). What little speech there is in Tribe, is effective and meaningful, captivating the audience. Technically the show is beautiful, with the light and sound coming together to fill what could be a slightly cavernous stage space.

Not enough positive things can be said about the performers, who are among the finest ensemble I have seen on stage. They balance each other beautifully, working cohesively as a unit, whilst still allowing individual members to shine. The movement is dynamic and compelling, managing to tell its story with great skill. Often I find with physical pieces they have to sacrifice either clarity or aesthetics, yet Temper Theatre strike the balance perfectly, creating a truly beautiful and clear piece.The show is also only 40 minutes long, which means there is never time for the audience’s attention to drift, and also keeps the piece punchy and striking.

Armed with an engaging topic, an electrifying energy, and outstanding choreography, this is well worth anyone’s time. For physical theatre aficionados and newbies alike, this is an accessible, captivating, and moving production. I very rarely say something is a ‘must-see’, but Tribe really is. I can only hope that Temper Theatre take this production on post-Fringe, as it is something that needs to be shared. 

Reviews by Marthe de Ferrer

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The Blurb

Ru’s quest begins at a time he is least expecting. Startled by a news report he sees on his laptop, Ru suddenly sees the world from a new perspective.Through ensemble movement and fragmented imagery Temper unleash a world between worlds. Ru must shatter his dystopian office and open his mind to more than just sweaty nightclubs and pointless internet shopping. As tribal whispers bleed through the cracks in his life, he finds himself being dragged deep into an ancient rainforest. Only when he is face to face with his tribe will he begin to tell the truth.