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Wonder

Bongo Club, Edinburgh
Three stars
When one of the carpet-load of balloons that line the club space where
the young Creative Electric company's latest show is being performed
accidentally pops, it's as if the bang is calling time on a particular
moment in the four performers lives before they move on to the next
one. In each corner of what looks like a subterranean playroom, each of
the cast – two male, two female, germ-free adolescents all - stand
before a full-length mirror, recounting what they see in soliloquies of
self-image that reveal more than their masked personae intend.

Over the course of the next forty minutes or so, those masks are put to
one side as each opens up to reveal what it's like to live in a world
where image is everything, and social media status creates a kind of
playground pecking order. The candour with which the quartet lay bare
their growing pains go beyond confessional in Hannah Marshall's
touchy-feely immersive production to become a choreographed ritual of
collective purging before each goes on to the next thing.

With sound designer Joshua Payne's twinkly ambient soundscape
underscoring a whirlwind of text, movement and physical and emotional
tics, performers Hannah Gipp, Mark Hannah, Christie Russell-Brown and
Will Stringer give their all as they explore their identities that
eventually find a release. As they end leaving themselves willingly
vulnerable before reaching out to each other for a group hug, they are
in the throes of discovering who they are, who they want to be and,
perhaps more importantly, who they might eventually grow into.
Audiences can find out for themselves when Wonder visits North Berwick
on Tuesday and Glasgow on Friday.

The Herald, May 5th 2014

ends

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