Two Man Show

In an explosion of energy, raw intensity and emotion, RashDash theatre company shatters preconceptions of the patriarchy. This theatre group dismantles traditional notions, with the actors taking on the roles of two women who are playing two men. When no words exist to express the feelings they want to get across, they utilise breath-taking harmonies, live music and dance to convey these challenging emotions to us.

A stunning combination of agility, determination and grace, weaving their bodies into one

From the onset, this piece is anything but conventional, with the actors onstage using microphones to warp their voices while tracing the history of male/female dominance. They juxtapose the archaic subject matter, which references the hunter gatherer and Neolithic period, with the costuming, bright lights and electric guitar used. This immediate contrast between old and new marks the first subtle hint of the divide upon which this piece is based; the differences (or lack of) between men and women.

In order to get their point across thoroughly, the female actors take on the role of two men, Dan and John. My one flaw with this piece was the fact that, initially, the characterisation of these male characters seemed slightly too weak, and it was difficult to believe in the purpose of these roles. However, by the end of this performance any reservations held by the audience were wiped away. This was mainly due to the use of physical theatre and dance between each scene. The strength and capability of the actors was clear, as they confidently moved with a stunning combination of agility, determination and grace, weaving their bodies into one. At this point, it was clear that the role of man or woman was irrelevant, and we saw the relevance of each character purely in its raw, most human form.

The most wonderful thing about this piece was the fact that we felt comfortable in the presence of the actors, even as they switched characters and seemingly dismantled scenes. As they reviewed and critiqued what they were trying to get across to the audience in plain view and earshot of said audience, we were left with a clear and honest portrayal of complex subject matter. This company succeeded in breaking free from social constrictions, and finding ways to express feelings for which the human language has no words.

Reviews by Angela O'Callaghan

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Performances

Location

The Blurb

Men have all the power. John and John keep hearing people say that men have all the power, but it doesn’t feel like that to them. Abbi and Helen are making a show about Man and men. Because we all need to pull together now. We want to talk about masculinity and patriarchy but the words that exist aren’t good enough. So there’s music and dance too. Fringe First winners 2010 and 2011 return with a playful new show about gender and language. Two women play two women playing two men.

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