Pinocchio: A Fantasy of Pleasures @ New Town Theatre

Decadent and debauched fairytales

Feature by Clare Sinclair | 08 Aug 2011
  • Pinocchio

In recent years, as stand-up and sketch comedy have dominated the Fringe, it has become easy to forget that the festival is also a place to celebrate the more experimental side of performance - a place where artists can be free to merge a multitude of expressive arts into one big melting pot.

Thank the fringe Gods for Company XIV then whose Pinocchio - A Fantasy of Pleasures is no ordinary children's fairy tale. In fact it is quite the opposite. Jay Donn, Laura Careless and company lead us through a spectacularly sumptious tale of love, lust and longing with beautifully Baroque stylings. The result is a wonderfully guilty pleasure.

Pulling from Commedia dell'Arte influences, the players use masks to accentuate their characteristics - in particular the instantly recognisable nose of Pinocchio. The piece also plays on modern ideas of fetishism - men in leather muzzles are commanded by the imposing women of Pleasure Island, and avant-garde corsetry abounds. Austin McCormack's concept and direction plays with a multitude of disciplines as he interweaves burlesque, opera and dance, melding baroque with modern choreography. 

Almost cinematographic in nature, this production's incredibly innovative use of lighting is visually stunning - although at times there's so much going on at one time, it can be hard to focus on one thing. Who needs focus though. Go on, treat yourself to some decadence.

New Town Theatre 4-28 Aug, 7pm (1hour 10 min), Various Prices