Monday, 15 October 2012

Bane: An evening of theatrical magic

Review of Bane at Florence Arts Centre, Egremont

IN days to come, I suspect most of the audience who watched "Bane" will recall a show with at least half a dozen cast members, dramatic scenery and a plethora of costumes and props. In fact, it was a one-man show using no scenery, no costumes and no props.
But with just his voice and body, Joe Bone (playing confusingly Bruce Bane!) conveyed busy streets, car chases, fights and all the action from an American city rife with gangsters.
It was a feat of magic even Derren Brown would have been proud to have pulled off. And it showed just how great acting can stir the imagination of the audience.
Joe acted the roles of 7ft tall gangsters, five-year-old girls, mad scientists - even cats and dogs. His portrayal of the death of a canary and a dog from a poisoned dart was so convincing I almost expected the traditional "no animals were injured in the making of this play" at the end of the show!
In my mind now I still 'remember' watching a car being driven through rainy streets with sirens blaring in the background and headlights zooming past.  But the reality was just good acting by one remarkable man and a good dash of imagination. Joe even provided the slightly out of tune car radio.
I say one-man show but there was also musical accompaniment by Ben Roe which beautifully complemented the on-stage action.
Apparently this was the first in a trilogy of Bane shows. Let's hope we don't have to wait too long for conjuror Joe Bone to return.

- Alan Cleaver