Printable CopyTHE ARTIST
The Adelaide Festival
Adelaide College of the ARTS
Until 14 Mar 2020

Review by Chris Eaton

In a festival that has hard hitting theatre tackling subjects like war, death, religion et al. it is gratifying to find the fun that is “The Artist”. This fun isn’t fluffy and light, it’s finely honed, as tightly wound as a guitar string. Strumming the string is a Thom Monckton a tour de force of acrobatics, physical dexterity, slapstick, mime and as the title would suggest a very fine painter too.

Under the direction of Sanna Silvennoinen, The Artist is impeccably well crafted requiring the utmost commitment and concentration from Monckton and the team of techs supporting him. Monckton and the audience have no opportunity to be idle as he vacillates from the minutiae of a fruit bowl nightclub to pommel horse style gesticulations to staple a sheet to a frame. The sheer variety of actions that all take place in an atelier is a theatrical feat.

The lighting by Juho Rahijarvi is tasteful and ably punctuates the action, whereas the sound design by Tuomas Norvio and Atte Kantonen should also be commended. Monckton doesn’t speak during the performance so the music and sound assists to provide an aural delight to accompany the outstanding visual display.

Thom Monckton and the Circo Aereo team should be commended for such a refreshing, light hearted and impressive artistic display.