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melted_snowball and I went to see multimedia theatre with chezmax & theinfamousj on Friday. It was simulcast in Peoria IL and Orlando FL, with different actors in each location interacting with each other via large projection screens.

The Globe and Mail reviewed it:

In a theatre in Orlando, Lewis Carroll's Alice steps into the legendary rabbit hole. Moments later, she steps out - in Waterloo, Ont. Minutes later, she somehow emerges again, this time in Peoria, Ill.

Welcome to one of the most ambitious, experimental theatre projects ever conceived - Alice (Experiments in Wonderland) - a multipoint telematic performance for children and adults.


The idea, updating Alice in Wonderland to the 21st century, was clever: there are three Alices, they use the Buddy System rather than jumping down a rabbit hole all alone; the Caterpillar (in two locations) is trying to quit smoking; Alice has Technowizard guides who give her cheat-codes to the story; and the Book of the story itself is a character, trying to stay relevant in a TV/computer world.

At times it felt like they added unnecessarily to the story: why did we have to see a triumphant final fight with the Jabberwock? It felt overblown and too heavy on flashing lights and dry ice (I've never started coughing from dry ice before; this could've been a hint to the writers/producers that they over did it!)

The Walrus and Carpenter (as a rap) was cute, or annoying, I couldn't decide. The acting felt slightly out of sync, due to the technical issues involved. I spent a bit of time thinking about whether I thought the simulcast aspect worked; I think if they could've eliminated the lag and occasional echoes, it would be a success; as it was, it felt semi-successful.

The costumes were great. (According to the Globe and Mail article, costume design was by Heather Henson, daughter of Jim Henson.) The Caterpillar was amazing- it looked big and menacing with just a bit of yellow circles of tubing and green tufts of fur.

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