Misty, Trafalgar Studios

Review by Pearl Esfahani

Arinze Kene’s visceral writing places us from the offset within the throbbing organ that is London; packed night buses in its veins, we are its cells colliding against each other with our own truths. We follow an illuminating take on gentrification through the story of the writer, and their character running parallel to each other, living different lives but ultimately affected by the same things that London living entails.

By the end, I’m not even sure how much of a yarn has been spun between the two narratives, but I don’t care. Particularly as a native working class Londoner, so much of the show resonated, from locals being priced out, to the small details such as the sound of hard shoes in the mornings. The devised and collaborative approach to the development of Misty comes through in the cohesiveness of the entire production. Arinze’s presence is powerful and around him, Set/Light/Video all work together skewing and enhancing the architecture of bodies, and landscape on stage. Nanyonjo’s movement direction interacts perfectly with all this and the exceptional sound and music carry the audience through with force, (you’ll be glad to know there are plans to record the soundtrack). Elerian’s direction both acknowledges the process of theatre-making and makes it as much as part of the show as moments which are total theatrical magic. Although a subject matter with very real consequences, there is humanity, and humour throughout, and a very satisfying embrace of the absurd in the second half. There is a moment involving a large orange balloon that in all honesty, I could have watched for an hour in itself. A visual, aural, emotional, and intellectual invigoration. This is exactly what I wish all Featre (yes, with an F) could be.

Cast and Creatives

  • ARINZÉ ARINZÉ KENE
  • ACTOR/MUSICIAN SHILOH COKE
  • ACTOR/MUSICIAN ADRIAN MCLEOD
  • VOICE ACTOR (LUCAS)AKEMNJI NDIFORNYEN
  • LITTLE GIRLS SEDONNA HENOK
  • MYA NAPOLEAN
  • RENE POWELL
  • UNDERSTUDY FOR ARINZÉ KIBONG TANJI
  • UNDERSTUDY MUSICIAN CHLOE BURKE  , HANNAH MADDOX
  • BY ARINZÉ KENE
  • DIRECTED BY OMAR ELERIAN
  • SET DESIGNER RAJHA SHAKIRY
  • LX DESIGNER JACKIE SHEMESH
  • SOUND DESIGNER ELENA PEÑA
  • VIDEO DESIGNER DANIEL DENTON
  • MUSICAL DIRECTORS SHILOH COKE
  • ADRIAN MCLEOD
  • DRAMATURGS KIRSTY HOUSLEY
  • STEWART PRINGLE
  • MOVEMENT DIRECTOR RACHAEL NANYONJO
  • CASTING DIRECTOR (UNDERSTUDY)ELLIE COLLYER-BRISTOW
  • ASSOCIATE SOUND RICHARD BELL

Misty is on until 20th October https://www.bushtheatre.co.uk/event/misty-west-end/

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