Follow the Faun – Arts Theatre West End
“Welcome to our realm!”
We were greeted upon our arrival and led to the bar by a sparkling nymph-like creature. As the nymphs posed for pictures and discussed our perilous journey to their lair, we had the chance to relax and look around. A relatively intimate, blacked out room welcomed us. Many others could be seen glancing around in anticipation as the nymphs took a step into the centre of the room and began to speak to us all.
“Leave the outside world at the door,” they told us. Finding a place to leave our coats and bags, we began to spread out and then joined a very interesting yoga like experience of gentle movement and deep breathing. Then, standing there with our eyes closed and our guards down, we began to hear the sound of hooves make their way from the back of the room to the very front.
Unable to resist, I opened my eyes for a brief second and found a fantastic faun standing right in front of me. He slowly made his way to the front of the room, stopping at times to brush against someone or look at the room, and then began the strangest, most energetic and hilariously fun ninety minutes of my life.
“I describe my work as participatory rather than immersive,” explained Andy Black (our fabulous faun) as we chatted after the show. He explained how he likes to encourage everyone to take part and honestly, once you see everyone letting go and having a great time, you can’t help but join in yourself.
Mirroring the Faun throughout the show, you journey through different dimensions and strange worlds, find your inner goddess, share yourself with your “fellow travellers” and let your inner light shine out. Through movement, Andy managed to get everyone laughing and raving together. Going from one extreme to another, to someone watching from outside they may have seen it as an “Awesome Trippy Zumba class” with everyone in the audience dancing around to a pulsing and exciting soundtrack of club music. But to those taking part, it was a hilarious and freeing journey.
“I had no idea that was going to happen… but I just had to join in,” my friend told me after the show. Unused to immersive theatre, she was terrified someone would speak to her in the beginning. But by the end she was having as much fun as everyone else.
You can only appreciate the true fun and freedom of Follow the Faun if you join in. So find your best dancing shoes, your comfiest clothes and bring your friends to this incredibly intoxicating show. I hope you find your inner goddess along the way!