Anthony Morris’ thoughtful yet frustrating look at prejudice and failure begins with its protagonist, Fidel, flipping through old gas bills and job rejection letters. He is looking for his old school diary. When he finds them, they tell the story of a kid who is told to aim lower, not higher.
Actor Anthony Ofoegbu molts with impressive agility between a brown-haired middle-aged man and an energetic kid assuming he must be “10 times better” than his white classmates. yourself to be successful. But even his energy and commitment can’t make this swirl, over and over again Young Vic singing production.
The same atmospheric words were written on the stage floor, as if on a blackboard. Often, they are repetitive: in an overused device, Ofoegbu says the same phrase over and over, his intonation all the more distressing. It was perhaps designed to show how the things that prejudiced adults say to children stick with them, echoing throughout their lives: “There are no lofty ideas anymore,” said Fidel. , despite his excellent academic results. But it also makes this manufacturing process thin and repetitive, its point being emphasized.
Tough question Pay careful attention to the past and ignore the present. It’s clear that Fidel hasn’t achieved the glittering career he deserves, but it’s unclear who he became, or what other consolations life may have given him.
Tough question Largely a monologue revolving around childhood, with a psychotherapist’s emphasis, verbal interrogations are interspersed with moments of movement and pantomime that leave Ofoegbu sweat and water eye. But a few scenes are confusing with a medical professional’s gesture of what Fidel’s present might look like, as a man dressed in white walks in and tries to force him to take a pill. It feels hackedneyed. This production focuses on emotions that are deeply felt through context, but that means, ironically, for a production that takes self-examination as its theme, it doesn’t always there is room for psychological nuance.
Still, Tough question illuminated the flawed ideal of social mobility through education. It’s often hazy, but what comes from its depths is the pain when a promise written in a school report is broken, time and time again, by the afterlife.
‘Conundrum’ goes on at Young Vic until February 4
https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/theatre-dance/reviews/conundrum-review-young-vic-b1997065.html Conundrum Review: A Frustrating Look at Bias and Failure