Friday, 11 October 2002

Interior Sites Project, IRAA, Oct 10, 2002

 IRAA Theatre  until November 2m 2002
 Live webcast: 
tickets $150
Reviewer: Kate Herbert

We are all voyeurs in some way. We peer into through windows into cosy, well-lit rooms. Real dramas and real life television fascinate us.

The Interior Sites Project  by IRAA Theatre, is theatre veritè. Director, Renato Cuocolo  and actor Roberta Bosetti  provide us with a twelve hour experience that challenges our concepts of theatre on a fundamental level.

There is no conventional theatre. The relationship between actor and audience is completely altered. The fourth wall, that artificial separation of audience from the stage, is broken down.

Seven guests are invited to a secret address. We are instructed to bring a towel and jim-jams. Renato collects us in a van.

The event begins as he drives us through the virtual streets of an Italian village: Vercelli.

He gives us a key to a house. We enter and roam freely, reading letters, books, peeping at photos and feeling naughty.

Suddenly, an amazed woman in a bathrobe appears. "What are you doing here? How did you get in?"

This personal, intrusive and intimate relationship develops over an entire evening, night and morning. We become her confidantes, her friends her dinner guests.

The natural flow of conversation is interfolded amongst the theatrical text. At moments we do not know what is script and what is conversation.

In addition, the entire night is filmed and sent out on the internet. Even our lives are not private any.

After dinner, we witness her gruelling and intimate performance in a tiny downstairs room. We sit at her knees, enthralled.

Bosetti is captivating as person and performer. We are charmed. We want her to be happy, want to ease her pain. We are part of her world now and cannot escape.

Is it art or life? The boundaries bleed. This is innovative theatre that question what constitutes theatre and narrative.

The sleepover in a room full of single beds is like a slumber party except we have Roberta on our earphones and her bedroom on the monitor all night.

She wakes us like mummy at 7am. We breakfast, expectant, awaiting something momentous. She farewells us at the door and we are ferried to our cars at 8.30am.

We feel the need to debrief. If you see this, have coffee together before you go home. It is a marvellous, cheering, warming, wrenching experience.

By Kate Herbert

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