Review: Captain Ko and the Planet of Rice, Dancing Brick, Pulse Fringe Festival, Ipswich, May 26

Captain Ko and the Planet of Rice, Dancing Brick, Pulse Fringe Festival, Ipswich, May 26

The captain of a spaceship tries to make contact with the inhabitants of a mystery planet (not unlike Earth).

In subsequent scenes an old man or woman tries to set the table and boil the kettle for tea while a Russian cosmonaut in a space station finds he is almost forgotten amidst the turmoil surrounding the break-up of the Soviet Union.

Confusing as it may seem, this piece of episodic drama - aimed at reflecting human anxiety towards ageing and the risk of dementia or Alzheimer’s - evoked a strong sense of isolation and foreboding.

There were also flashes of humour in a play, still in its development stage, which is told through a mix of science fiction and real life testimony. The latter comes from the true story of the Russian cosmonaut, Sergei Krikalev, marooned in orbit, “teleprinter” words along with images of the cosmos being projected onto a large upstage screen.


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A solo performer, Valentine Cesch, superbly mimed an intricate domestic scene to a sound track of clinking cups and running water.

This promising production, created by Ceschi and Thomas Eccleshare, involves input from sound artist Caroline Devine and video artist Susanne Dietz.

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David Green

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