The Chicanery of Some Dumb Play

Some Dumb Play
Some Dumb Play

They crowded around the stairs at the Sue Benner Theatre; fine young things armed to the fingertips with Weapons. They dextrously navigate with one thumb, eagerly looking to connect to the network named for the performance; do you wish to join Some Dumb Play?

As the punters waited to take their seats they were eased into the rules of play by voting on which song to play next. The play list was full of old greats; lots of crooning about love and colourful things, the chattering crowd teased and cajoled each other in order to get the song they voted for up over the line. Swiftly and unconsciously they each began to harbour ulterior motives and create their own little games; one voter would wait until the very last minute, to make an anti-vote, trying to bring down the popular choice, while I, always the nervous decision maker worried about the implications of each choice I made so erred and changed my vote constantly.

Toby Martin introduced the show quickly with a little quip warning you NOT to turn your phones off; we all felt naughty and excited and were ready to go.

The stage was unveiled; an arsenal of costumes, props and furniture, stacked like a back-stage inventory. An @SomeDumbPlay tweet heralded, “Included in our props & set pile: a real prosthetic leg, a car battery, & a bubble machine all from different scenes”. The actors appeared and busied themselves being actorly; some physical warm ups here and some frantic script reading sessions there while they waited for the results of the first vote; the atmosphere was action-packed, the theatre energised and buzzing. We had three options to select from to decide how to start the play.

There is something deeply disturbing about walking away from an experience and realising you have been had and that was how I felt as I walked away from the Metro, numb and feeling abused and shamed. That was the moment that I realised that this