Half-Wit’s physical theatre confuses Lincoln audience

First-Wit Theatre Company performed their show "First Class" at the Drill Hall. Photo: Marcia Petterson

Kicking off Lincoln Drill Hall’s Comedy Fringe Weekend, Half-Wit Theatre Company brought their original production “First-Class” to the Lincoln stage on Thursday, March 11th.

The show has two performers, Amy Nostbakken and Nir Talden. They focus around the meeting of character Michael, who has lost his zest for life, and postal worker Bea, who takes Michael and the audience on an energetic whistle-stop tour of Paris.

The duo used a minimal set of just a table and a box, yet managed to give the audience a show full of laughter, music and dancing. The pair used simple acrobatics and burst into song when the time was right in an attempt to recreate Paris in the minds of the audience.

The show was entertaining and certainly different from other types of theatre, but the plot was often diverted from in exchange for visual entertainment and so made the story hard to follow. By only using two props and their bodies to create scenes like the sea and the traffic, these images were hard to distinguish and caused confusion.

The pair spoke to The Linc and said that their aim was to “communicate a story to everybody, no matter where they come from or what language they speak [so that] they can understand just by the visuals.”

Unfortunately, this didn’t transpire in First Class, though the visuals clearly showcased their dancing talents that they learnt together at Jacques Lecoq theatre school in Paris.

The pair are clearly dedicated to their profession and have put everything they can into making the company work and this energy is certainly witnessed when they perform: “You’ve got to enjoy what you do. It takes up all of your time, even when you’re not on stage, you’re rehearsing or thinking about it, and then thinking about what’s next,” Nostbakken said.

What the duo were trying to achieve was plausible and shows that they have ambitious ideas. However, because of this ambition, they overestimated how open-minded the average audience can be and unfortunately just came across perplexing.

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