>>> SummerWorks review: In Utero Out

IN UTERO OUT by Brescia Nember Reid, Bloodbeard.

IN UTERO OUT by Brescia Nember Reid, Bloodbeard and Drawing With Knives. Drake Underground. Aug 7 at 8:30 pm, Aug 8 at 6:15 pm, Aug 9 at 8 pm, Aug 10 at 8 pm, Aug 11 at 7:30 pm. See listing. Rating: NNNN

This breathtaking shadow puppet show from up-and-coming art and performance collective Drawing With Knives explores themes of reproduction and embodied identities through a variety of cultural lenses.

Foregrounding our often over-looked in utero experiences and early relationships with placenta, shadow figures and dynamic colourful backdrops inspired by indigenous artwork bring tiny cells, embryos and fetuses to life in creative and intriguing ways.

One of their most effective sections contrasts biomedical and traditional approaches to the body and birthing process by comparing the early-twentieth century practice of using drugs to dull the senses of women in labour, with the oral history recollections of a mother who detected the presence of her twins in utero, despite assurances to the contrary by doctors.

Spellbinding visuals and haunting audio production – delivered with the odd dash of well-placed humour – make this spectacle engrossing and thought-provoking.

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