Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Review: A Sensory Stimulation

Imagine yourself in a nightmare where you fall down a giant hole into a never ending pit of despair. Though it may be dark, it's still vivid. Now imagine that dream appearing before your eyes. That is dungeon. Inspired by the video games, kabuki, horror movies, and Pixar shorts and uniting shadow puppets, movement, and live music comes a show that will stimulate your senses.
The story is simple. Brother must rescue sister but endure an adventure beyond his wildest dreams. And a giant spider. The simplicity of the story allowed Artistic Abandon NYC to create a visually stunning piece that afforded your imagination to run wild. Using subtle voice-produced sounds and live guitar and bass gave the narrative a light to shine through movement. Created by Samantha Blaine, Kristopher Dean, Claron Haydem Casey Scott Leach, Kyle Nunn, and Mikayla Stanley, dungeon is nothing short of remarkable. The way the ensemble moved through this world was flawless. With the only sources of light coming from flashlights and tiny colorful LED, you never knew when or where a body would show up but their presence was felt. What makes dungeon so special is how complex it appears but how simple it is. Cardboard certainly goes a long way. When you walk into the theater, the giant fabric screen doesn’t look great, in fact you can see the ripples in the material. But you instantly forgive it when the lights go out and the ensemble creates a giant eye, capitalizing on the imperfections to represent the wrinkles. When you think of electric guitars, it’s usually safe to say that the bass is forgotten. But the bass guitar was the unsung hero of dungeon. The deep, rich sound of the bass was so essential to this world and truly set the dark and mysterious tones. Together, the manufactured resonance of both guitar and bass brought the atmosphere to a whole new level.
If you are afraid of the dark, stay away from dungeon. But if you’re eager to let you imagination roam and your senses aroused, this is the show for you. I look forward to what these artists do next.