Fringe review: Interstellar Elder

INTERSTELLAR ELDER by the company (Ingrid Hansen, SNAFU). At the Theatre Centre Franco Boni Theatre. July 10 at 8:45 pm, July 11 at 2:45 pm, July 12 at 11 pm, July 13 at 3:30 pm, July 15 at 7 pm. See listing. Rating: NNNN

This solo piece of delightfully fun and vibrantly stylized physical comedy from BCs SNAFU Dance Theatre is set on a giant spaceship carrying cryogenically frozen humans waiting for Earth to become habitable following an ecological catastrophe.

The action follows Kitt (Ingrid Hansen), who is woken up early and assigned the role of sleep custodian by the ships HAL-like computer, as she toils alone for years dealing with the psychological strains of long-duration space flight including boredom, monotony, loneliness, hopelessness and feeling disconnected from Earth.

Hansen draws on clown and mime to make Kitts orbital ordeal an emotional journey as well as a visual treat, finding lots of quirky humour in the awkward and mundane aspects of life in space her daily routine of peeing in a funnel and consuming a nutrient spray gets big laughs, as does hauling space trash to the ships incinerator.

Clad in a neon 90s one-piece ski suit as her space uniform, and surrounded by a colourful set packed with surprises, Hansen uses an array of creative props including a comically long extendable feather duster to create an infectious sense of childhood play.

If you ever played astronaut as a kid, Interstellar Elder will take you back.

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