Monday, September 18, 2006

Charles Ross's One Man Star Wars Trilogy - Sheffield Lyceum, 17/09/06

At the end of the performance, Ross said "If this wasn't what you expected, well I can understand that, because the title is misleading..." And he's totally right. Well, he's wrong and being sarcastic, but you know what I mean. One Man Star Wars Trilogy really does do exactly what it says on the tin. There's very little out-of-character talking (apart from five minutes at the end for thanks and a quick ad for his next show), and indeed very few jokes - this is one man acting out the original Star Wars films in an hour. But it's great. For one, it's an achievement in pure stamina - I swear, this man must lose a stone in pure sweat every night because he puts everything into the performance, running round the stage creating galactic explosions one minute, swinging round an invisible lightsabre the next. More wonderful, though, is the love of the films that comes through. He doesn't do exact impressions of the actors or their parts, but picks on particular, and instantly recognisable characteristics, like Han's cowboy swagger, and Luke's constant whining. These are so accurately and funnily observed, that they could only be performed by a true fan. Plus, it's quite fun spotting which bits of the films he likes best, because he quotes them in full when it's really not necessary: 'We're fine, we're all fine here... how are you?.... Boring conversation anyway'. That's one of my personal favourites too. He also picks out tiny little quirks of the films which normally pass you by (who can name the only character to pronounce Leia "Leeah"?!) and it's that attention to detail which really makes the show. Problems? Really this isn't a show to dissect too much, but I guess some audience participation might be a welcome addition - I don't know about anyone else, but I was itching to shout 'No Luke, I am your father!". And 'He doesn't like you - I don't like you either'. But that one probably was just me.

Basically, the more you know and love the films, the more you'll enjoy this show, and if you've not seen them at all (and in which case, really, what are you doing reading this blog? ;) ) then it'll certainly be one of the the wierdest hours of your life.

EDIT: Ooooh, I forgot - on arrival at the theatre we were confronted by stormtroopers, Boba Fett and C3P0. Not something one would normally forget! It's a wonderful idea, as makes the night feel like a real event. Thank god for camera phones!

Me with C3PO:


Halt!


The actors go a bit too method...

Fun night :)

12 comments:

Lisa Rullsenberg said...

Hey! We can see more of Anna than her left eye!

You look great!

loved the review btw!

Dean said...

I've only seen two of the three... I'll get my coat.

Since I'm not a Star Wars fan I didn't get around to seeing this up at Edinburgh but it's one of the many 'geek shows' that seemed to be a great success this year - between this, a show about Back To The Future, one about Doctor Who and one on geekdom in general... yay those of us with unhealthy obsessions!

*goes off to write a show about Buffy the Vampire Slayer for next year's fringe*

(and like Lisa said, cool photo - you're the one left yeah? :P )

Ash said...

haha that looks cool. Glad it was a good night!

AnnaWaits said...

Hey Ash! Good to hear from you - if you can catch it, do :)

Lisa - first, thanks and second, yeah, pictures of the top half of my head can be found in various places on the net (myspace, facebook etc) so you can feel very privliged! ;)

Dean - there was a Back To The Future show?! I think I prefer that trilogy to Star Wars! But that doesn't let you off not having seen them all! :)

Paul Fuzz said...

'We're fine, we're all fine here... how are you?.... Boring conversation anyway' Brilliant. Did he do; "That's not a moon. That's a space station!"? Sounds ace, Anna. Can't believe there was a Back To The Future one too. Baggsy free +1 if it comes to Sheffield! Mum said the Storm Troopers were doing the whole 'Move along, move along' bit. "We don't need to see your identification." Brilliant.

AnnaWaits said...

Yes, he did the famous Death Star quote. In fact the only famous one I could think of that he missed out was 'These aren't the droids you're looking for'. Unfortunately seeing Stormtroopers outside the theatre caught me off guard and I forgot to say it myself...!

He's going to the Leeds West Yorkshire Playhouse on Sunday October 1st, by the way ;)

SimonHolyHoses said...

Cool

Matt_c said...

Sky are also running a Reduced Star Wars - I think it's by the guys that reduced Shakespeare, etc.

Anyway, it's really rubbish. I thought it was going to actually be made by people who understood film but it was the smuggest Theatre with a capital 't' I've seen in ages. The first three were shit, A New Hope was good, Empire was mostly a poem about the AT-AT and by that time I was bored. Poor.

Your one sounds fun though!

George Walks said...

I like the Buffy idea. All seven seasons in an hour?

MIKEY said...

Gosh anna, you are a pretty lady...

Deano said...

The Back to the Future and Doctor Who shows were just themed stand-up shows (I have a recording of Moths Ate My Doctor Who Scarf somewhere...), as would any potential attempt I could make at writing a show about Buffy... still the concept of all seven seasons condensed to one hour is an interesting one, though minutes 25-34 would have to be really poor and minutes 43-51 quite depressing...

AnnaWaits said...

Haha!