Hedonists lost in the pleasuredome at east London theatre
PUBLISHED: 09:40 24 June 2014 | UPDATED: 10:03 24 June 2014
A provocative performance exploring the world of outsiders and sinners is coming to Toynbee Studios in Commercial Street.
Critically-acclaimed choreographic artist Joseph Mercier and his company PanicLab will present Of Saints and Go-Go Boys, a show inspired by Jean Genet’s 1943 novel Our Lady of the Flowers.
Forward-thinking for its time, the novel portrays the party culture, eroticism and pleasure-seeking of the Parisian underworld.
Joseph said: “It started by us posing the question of what Genet would make of life today and how might he conceive of things like social relations and families in relation to his love of the outsiders. This piece really questions what that means.”
Audiences are invited to walk around the promenade set, in the form of a flat where the three central characters reside. The performance charts the last chapter in their lives together. Elements of the characters are again taken from those in Genet’s seminal novel and the cast members themselves, which Joseph said forced the actors to face darker aspects of their personalities.
The intimate space of the flat allows the audience a glimpse into every element of their existence, painting a captivating, sometimes dark picture.
Joseph said: “The piece was a kind of beast that really took over our lives for several months.
“It is one of the most exhausting pieces we have ever worked on.”
The mix between fantasy and hyper-reality in the show promises to provide a charged experience.
Joseph said: “I think our work is challenging and provocative and I think it’s important for us to be really critical of contemporary society.
“I hope that our work engages with people. Also, I think this piece is really beautiful; it is quite deeply personal and moving.”
The show is not suitable for under-16s and contains nudity. It runs from July 17-19 at 6pm and 8pm. Tickets cost £12 and can be booked by calling 020 7650 2350.