Most theatre and film audiences are accustomed to the action unfolding before them in a steady fashion. But Live Live Cinema is different. The story unfolds but in a way you won’t expect or have experienced before. It happens through the amazing cast who quite literally bring it to life in a myriad of ways, and at break-neck speed.
Phil Evans of Jumpboard Productions explains, “We defy the audience to know where to look at any one time. We’ve had people that have come back to see this show again because they are amazed at how much the performers can do at the one time. It’s a relentless experience.
“This is a very different type of show. There are multiple layers going on but this is what makes it special and memorable.”
For this year’s Galway International Arts Festival, the New Zealand troupe bring to life the 1960 Roger Corman movie ‘Little Shop of Horrors’, which Phil felt was the perfect choice to push the boundaries of what the theatre group had already been doing in the live performance field. Past productions include Francis Ford Coppola’s ‘Dementia 13’ and Herk Harvey’s 1962 classic ‘Carnival of Souls’.
The biggest task in putting on this particular show was to find actors that were multi instrumentalists, amazing performers, comic actors and all-round talented enough to pull off everything that is required of them.
“It wasn’t easy to find them but we have four performers that are amazingly talented,” he says.
The four performers, Hayley Sproull, Byron Coll, Laughton Kora and Barnie Duncan, work at break-neck speed to re-voice multiple characters in perfect lip sync while playing a brand new score and creating live sound effects. The performers leap from piano to guitar, bass to doorbell, to that thing that makes the sound of footsteps, performing in what is the company’s most ambitious 4-D movie to date. The show is created and composed by Leon Radojkovic and is directed by Oliver Driver.
Putting a new score to an existing film rather than just having accompaniment to a silent film was the genesis of this show and everything else grew around it. This show recreates the audio landscape live with a host of comic moments and props. There is even cooking going on at one point.
There are 19 characters, male and female, all different age ranges. All four cast members play the 19 characters.
“The cast spent hundreds of hours learning to lip sync to the movie. It’s incredible to watch their timing and while they do that they do so much more like play instruments, act, create sound effects and move across the stage.”
This creates a manic aspect to the show but it’s one that audiences love.
“If they drop the ball, we find the audience love that as it makes them human. We constantly push the performers. It’s what makes the show special.”
The New Zealand company’s production opened to critical acclaim earlier this year with the New Zealand Herald describing the performance as ‘exhilarating’ – “The original light-black comedy – which never took itself seriously – will now also be known for cornflakes that sound like carnations, toilet plungers worn as headgear and a rendition of Poi E by Seymour’s hypochondriac mother.”
Brimming with mayhem and madness, this dazzlingly sophisticated production is the ultimate film, music and live performance. Take a breath and prepare to be amazed by the talent of the cast of this show.
Live Live Cinema’s ‘Little Shop of Horrors’ takes place in the Bailey Allen Hall, NUI Galway tonight, Wednesday 22 July, at 8pm and tomorrow, Thursday 23 July, at 11pm. Tickets are €16/18 from www.giaf.ie or 091- 566577.