Which genius lit the world? [by Sharu Delilkan]
As the audience pile into the ‘small space’ I couldn’t help thinking ‘How many more can you fit in?’. But the constant stream keeps flowing and eventually the show’s co-writer and director Pip Smith bellows ‘I’ve added a chair at the end of that isle across the stage but can I make anyone else more comfortable by adding another chair?’. We nod profusely and say ‘yes please’, emphatically. I finally was able to exhale and begin settling in.
The Basement has basically been shrunk into a tiny space where there’s almost no delineation between actors and the audience who’re literally on top, around and between each other.
The tiny 2-m square stage in the middle is just sufficient for the actors to move around in – making us feel like we’re in the thick of the action – which I particularly liked. I also enjoyed actors coming onto the stage from all four corners keeping everyone on their toes. And the most interesting was when two of the actors had to clamber over people to get centre stage. The ‘small’ part of the billing gets a tick with the intimate setting that allows bombardment from all sides with dialogue, sound effects and cool lighting.