Get the eye rolling over with. The word pretentious often accompanies the idea of immersive theatre. But throughout the course of this year I found myself attending a handful of these events and finding myself to be blown away.
This one is for all the adventurous couples out there. Take a walk on the wild side and put down Time Out, dive into the weird and wonderful world of immersive theatre.
In immersive theatre, you the audience are not simply passive onlookers to a performance. You play a role yourself. Don’t worry you don’t have to learn any lines or start attending any night school courses in performance. You may be in the center of the action; witnessing and experiencing events unfold literally right in front of you, instead of in a tiny seat struggling with armrest politics with your neighbour.
In some cases you are able to literally explore the world the theatre company is transporting you to. The lines between performer and audience member are blurred as you could be herded into a different room quickly, members of the audience you may have been sat or stood next to could in fact be performers and you may never find out whether they were part of the public or not.
It’s an experience that is hard to describe or prepare someone for. As each production is varied and have their own style. But immersive theatre is for those of us out there looking for spontaneous action and adventure, be willing to step out of your comfort zone with an open mind and you will be rewarded with an evening like you have never experienced before. The more you let go and get involved the more you get out of the show, so unfold those arms and stop sighing and get involved.
This year I have had the pleasure of attending the incredible Party Skills For The End Of The World. A show which took place as part of the Manchester International Festival, taking place in a disused university building. The action began as we entered, we were given a lesson on how to make a perfect Martini, as we mingled with our fellow ‘guests’ the night took a turn for the worse as we discovered it would be our last night on earth.
We were left to explore the building and prepare ourselves for the oncoming apocalypse. In each room there were lessons taking place, some were party skills and others were survival lessons. We learnt how to make a trap for animals with a pair of iPhone headphones, how to dance, balloon animals and how to throw a punch. Without spoiling the show, the evening took a terrifying turn as the apocalypse began and we ran for our lives through the tunnels of the basement to a party at the end of the world.
I have never experienced a night like this. Truly incredible, I found myself crying with laughter one moment and contemplating modern life the next.
The idea of this post is for you and your significant other to stray away form your usual routines, try new things that you may think you hate. But how can you know until you try it! Patch up and swig down a few glasses of wine and go in with an open mind. Get involved and see what you take away from the experience. Because that’s what this style of theatre is all about, the experience, not a dry two hours of actors talking at you. They want everyone to come out having had a different experience and opinions.
Give it a try and let us know what you think! I will attach some links below so you can discover something in your area to try out.
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