Last Thursday saw the Vague Film Club abandon Cornerhouse for the Royal Exchange Studio and The Falling. This is the latest work from composer/artist/writer/devisor and, most importantly, fellow Vaguster, Ailís Ní Ríain. Ailís’s work was showing as part of BLUE2, a festival of emerging artists working across theatre, music, dance, film, poetry and more. You can view some of her art online over here.
Performed by on the harp by Amy Liptrott supported with video, The Falling uses music, poetry and the spoken word to present the confused inner world of a woman condemned to purgatory. I have my own experience of purgatory, but like so many personal experiences the two are very different. Ailís’s zombie-like protagonist is condemned to wander her afterlife, reliving the experiences that have left her so troubled. Its an absorbing piece that both challenges and stays with you.
Ailís’s 30 minutes-ish were preceded by Ammo, a very different piece. This was a conventional play centred upon a nerdish school girl whose unseen father has filled her head with ultra-conservative religion. She’s found a pair of loaded guns and sort of takes on the school bullies. While it was well performed by its teenage cast, the writing just wasn’t there.
Ending the festival’s first night was Speak. This reminded me a great deal of Incommunicado (which has just ended at Cornerhouse) particularly Bruce Nauman’s Lip Synch. It made for an interesting enough sound, but I don’t think it really had enough to say.