Dublin Theatre Festival

SITI (The Saratoga International Theater Institute)

The Medium

Conceived and Directed by Anne Bogart

Venue Samuel Beckett Theatre

Lighting Design by Michitomo Shiohara
Costume Design by Gabriel Berry
Cast includes J. Ed Araiza, Will Bond, Ellen Lauren, Kelly Maurer and Tom Nelis

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Avant garde director-choreographer-innovator Anne Bogart's new work The Medium is inspired by the life and predictions of pop culture philosopher Marshall McLuhan, who emerged in the 1960s as "the oracle of the electronic age".

Armed with a remote-control devise that can zap him from one television realm to another, actor Tom Nelis presents McLuhan sailing from talk shows to detective drama, from televangelist hour to The Dating Game, effectively turning that media theoretician into an unlikely hero, who roars out his predictions like some electronic-age Lear.

A great deal of provocative and sometimes exhilarating energy propels this diverting piece of expressionist theatre headlong down a bleak cyper-highway littered with sit-coms and gloomy visions of a dehumanised future. We encounter a Max Headroom-type-stand-up comedian "from cyberspace" discussing virtual reality, as the production surfs through a network of images. A TV chat show, a newscast, a cowboy opera, an absurdist sit-com, even a hip-hop dance interlude culminate and cresendo to make sense of McLuhan's constant refrain: "What's that buzzing?". The impending implosion you hear, Bogart signals, could be your own.

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