Pre / post shows talks
Post show event - Thu 28 Feb
My Perfect Mind
What defines a perfect mind? What becomes of those minds that are deemed the opposite and let loose like a lead ball rolling in to a container of smashed crockery? What becomes of an actor whose role is as ingrained into his mind as his own personality?
Performed by two male actors and set on a symbolically, sloping stage, My Perfect Mind was an unexpected, comical treat conveying the power and strength of the human mind, and the determination to overcome trauma and achieve success.
Although at times a little disconcerting, the use of humour and quick, bright banter provided a perfect backdrop to an undeniably sad story. The audience witnessed the demise and rise of the actor Edward Petherbridge before and after a stroke left him unable to continue his role as King Lear. However, there was no time to linger on feelings of sadness or pity. A variety of characters all played by the talented and funny Paul Hunter guided the actor’s journey through talent contests, reading lines in the attic and a rather unique blessing of a first rehearsal.
Inside jokes were used as a witty way of pulling the audience into a performance world of prompts, props and very important people. Internationally acclaimed actors, directors and theatres were name dropped to great laughs; dramatising the life of an actor in his natural environment – the theatre stage.
This performance was an artistic endeavour, both literally and metaphorically; from the fantastic, minimalistic yet effective staging to the poetic language with lines from King Lear sewn like a pattern in to the fabric of the story.
The delicate issue of having suffered a stroke is a matter which is fraught with sensitivity, but in this case was handled with humour whilst also at times coming across as incredibly touching.
The impressive switch between Petherbridge as an actor in rehearsal and an actor in character appeared swift and effortless. There is nothing quite like the Shakespearean language being spoken by a classically trained actor; the articulation, intensity, pace, pause and rhythm was beyond compare. Petherbridge gave as good a performance in My Perfect Mind as I am sure he would upon the stage as King Lear.
My Perfect Mind was a beautiful and highly unique piece of theatre. Without losing touch with its main theme, it managed to entertain the audience with a variety of anecdotes while remaining sweet and charming.
As funny as this performance was, it also safely avoided being, shall we say… borderline offensive.
- Imogen Strachan