Everything Must Go at South StBy Calvin Kier
November 11, 2010
After discovering that 'Everything Must Go' was not actually a closing down sale and won a Total Theatre Award in 2009, nothing was going stop me from heading down to South Street last Wednesday.
I was captured by the welcoming smile of Kristin Fredricksson, who was seen exercising on a trampoline upon arrival. Having synchronised her bounces in time to the background music, enriched the atmosphere. Thus, leading me to believe that behind that embracing smile, lay a life of complexity.
Fredricksson took to the stage with fantastic vibrancy, transforming from the gymnast daughter to the eccentric estate agent, Jane Martin.
There was much laughter amongst the audience, as she described in true estate agent style, the house that most people would prefer not to live in. We went on to discover that this house was in fact, her father's house and the story unravelled, as we were taken on a chronological journey of the life of Karl Fredricksson.
"Dad's life needs rhythm, belief and punctuation." This short, punchy line was illustrated by Fredricksson, as she returned to her trampoline to describe what was found in her father's house. Her struggle for breath, as she pursued to describe this, impacted greatly on this scene. Thus, creating an uncomfortable mental imagery of the manic and cluttered world in which her father lived.
It was nice to see unrehearsed footage of Karl Fredicksson himself. Also, giving a further insight into his character. Whilst narrating an explicit extract from Harold Pinter's 'The Caretaker', he tickled the audience by announcing that this is what he used to read to his kids. Clearly a man with a personality… what sort of personality, is left open to suggestion.
We learnt early on that Fredricksson's father trained for the Olympics in his earlier years. But when she described him as a hurdler, I believe that it is linked more prominently to his struggle for a sense of belonging in life. Not having had the best start, after having been the result of an affair that his sixteen year old mother had with the captain of a ship. Subsequently, robbing her of youth and the potential of becoming a talented pianist and dancer. Beneath all costumes and personas, that the performance revealed, remained someone who is vulnerable and insecure.
Changing the tone, I must commend Fredricksson for her creative use of an easel. Clearly, not purely for artists use, but wonderful for representing sordid love affairs too.
Admittedly, I was fighting back the tears towards the end of the performance, as photos were projected on screen, of both father and daughter together.
There was no dialogue, just music, enabling the audience to absorb what they were being presented with. This is where, I felt, that it stopped being a performance and reality kicked in. Despite the bizarre life that her father led, he was her father and Fredriksson loved him. I must say, this was a touching and highly imaginative performance that was thoroughly entertaining.
Calvin Kier is a volunteer reviewer for getreading