4.40PM 20-26 AUGUST
Assembly George Square
Red Bastard is the edgy creation of Los Angeles-based, Eric Davis, Deanna Fleysher and Sue Morrison. The surreal blend of uncomfortable truisms and confrontational style is refreshing and engaging. The show kicks off and the Red Bastard is revealed, monster like from the curtains. Shake a DNA cocktail of Quasimodo, Robert Smith and the Joker with a grotesque dervish ballerina and its not even close. The menacing stage persona immediately commands the respect and fear of the audience.
The show is immediately interactive. The audience is this show. The Red Bastard just evokes what’s in the audiences minds like a nightmarish counsellor. He warms the audience up with feet tapping and “sing in my mouth” before moving on to the intended target of our desires and regrets and why we don’t act on our impulses.
A chorus of Happy Birthday outside the tent is met by him and his now disciple audience going outside to add a more raucous chorus to carol anniversary celebrations.
Back to the current business of awaking a populace living in a culture of people trying to please each another he succeeds in making us see the benefit of taking that risk and being yourself, fuck you if you don’t like it. He postulates that being a mirror of other people ends up in a homogeneous, boring population. Carpe Diem! A game of dare-your- neighbour turns the stage into chaos when the darer has to take their own dare. The Red Bastard is rugby tackled and mounted, while another participant pours water over their head. One woman even proposes to her girlfriend (accepted!). Taking risks is good, no regrets.
(from Montreal Fringe)
This performance is genuinely thought-provoking and original. You are never sure whether its comedy or performance art but who likes genres anyway? Red bastard finishes with one final surprise. I’ll keep that to myself, I had to act on my impulse to be secretive. Experience this. Take your dare card on the way out… 4 stars
Reviewer – Dave McMenemy