Review – Noodles at Jacksons Lane

Part of London International Mime Festival 2015

Noodles, NoFit State Circus (UK) —

Credit: Sean Purser

Credit: Sean Purser

Noodles. Lots of noodles. So, so many of them. All over the stage. Heaps and piles and masses of noodles.

Ok, they’re not noodles. They’re ropes.

Five performers dressed as a neon girl band with lurid bows and frilly skirts introduce the show. They say ‘noodles’ a lot, in between swathes of quickfire Spanish. These outbursts give the feel of a watching a spanish telenovela. There is high drama, and a lot of it, but I’m not at all sure what the drama’s about.

The complexity comes not in the structure – alternation between magic by Miguel Muñoz and trapeze or tightrope routines by Kiara Mossberg, Cristina Geninazzi, Zenaida Alcalde and Lisa Angberg – but in the execution of these circus skills. At one point the performers abandon any semblance of skill or showmanship altogether and just muck around in the colossal mountains of noodles on stage. One pretends to be Marilyn Monroe, another a yeti.

Music accompanies each set piece, except for a couple of scenes which just have increasingly the disturbing squelching noises of a someone eating noodles like nobody’s watching. They’re like the horrific sound effects Tim and Eric add to their sketches.

The magic is mostly excellent – there’s a strange routine with egg yolks in some kind of transparent plasma, the inevitable impossibly long noodle from the mouth and a couple of objects conjured from thin air.

A lot of the action takes place at eye height of those in the back row of the raked seating. Ropes hang down like a jungle gym, and the acrobats do their graceful thing in pairs and trios on these high cords. Their synchronisation is impressive, their skill undeniable. The show boils down to four people doing impossible things 3 metres in the air. Noodles are a usefully loose theme around which to wrap an otherwise unstructured show. But the whole group displays honed talent and ridiculous humour.

 

Jacksons Lane until 31 January.

Tim Bano

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