Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh, Sat 20 Jun
With CCTV monitoring our city centres and vast databases intimately acquainted with our shopping habits, you’d be forgiven for thinking Big Brother was more than just a TV programme. Inspired by this over-zealous information gathering and the more sinister surveillance techniques of the former German Democratic Republic (GDR), choreographer Maresa von Stockert has asked the question, how far will it go?
‘I was interested in the history of the GDR and began looking at it more closely,’ says German-born von Stockert. ‘And what struck me is that it’s actually not that far away from how we live in the UK now. There’s a lot of surveillance here, but we don’t even question it.’
Performed by von Stockert’s Essex-based company, Tilted Productions, T[r]APPED follows five characters living in an imaginary state which she describes as ‘timeless – it could be in the future, but it’s also inspired by the past.’ Evoking a regime where officials eavesdrop on our private thoughts, von Stockert uses tragi-comedy to explore ideas of interrogation and bureaucracy. And, as always, Tilted’s use of set (in this instance two large cages) drives the piece along.
‘Set and object design are extremely important to me,’ says von Stockert. ‘And they’re heavily featured in T[r]APPED. But it’s important that they’re not just decoration – they have to actually be used in an integrated way and help convey what I’m trying to say.’