The concept: It’s 2050 and we’ve screwed up the planet. New Atlantis is a group who have come together to steer us away from oblivion. The head of our leading collective is resigning and we, the audience, need to decide who will replace her from three departments; Defence, Reform and Industry.
The urgency of the crisis is such that elections have to happen immediately. We make our minds up by travelling independently through the building, meeting those who work in each office who explain to us why we should vote for them. A lefty, reform-loving liberal like myself knew who he was voting for from the outset but I was intrigued. The Crystal offers the perfect setting, you’re on a high tech cruise on a mission for humanity.
The initial acting is adequate enough to get you engaged but the trip quickly descends. The shows best actor leaves the stage at her resignation.That doesn’t cut out the fun entirely but it’s definitely a dampener. The workers are endearing, what many of them lack in acting talent, they make up for with enthusiasm. My dreadlocked friend at Reform and the Scandinavian technician in the Department of Defense had charm and integrity when attempting to convince me that they were the way to go. But dividing governance by these iines is absurd. When questioned, the cast seemed as clueless as we were on how the divisions work or the policies would be implemented.
Its most redeeming feature is the conversation it provokes afterwards but the show left much to be desired. The show concludes with the vote. It’s interrupted however by a band of revolutionaries, so, out of nowhere, we are given a fourth option with even less time to think about it and no idea what the revolutionary force stands for. We are given yet another incomplete idea. I did enjoy myself, the concept, chatting with the cast and my friend about who to vote for but I was left ultimately unsatisfied. An hour and a half isn’t enough time to get deep enough into anything and the holes in the plot and characterisation are gaping. 2/5
Review written by Harry Davies.
New Atlantis was on at The Crystal from Monday 19th- Sunday 25th January. For more information on future events at the Crystal, visit here…
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