The experience of feeling lost can feel very overwhelming, we all having our own ways of dealing with this. Having encountered this on the way to the theatre one day, writer and performer Charlene Salter draws from her own experience of seeking directions, but rather than being greeted with support, being greeted with the complete opposite. We hear of misunderstandings and confrontation, Access All Areas– renowned for their work highlighting the often unheard voices of learning disabled artists presenting their latest audio immersive tour, The Interrogation.
Starting at St Leonard’s Church, the welcoming Access All Areas team are on hand to support all participants with setting up equipment (mobile phone/app), we’re given a brief explanation as to why Salter created the production before watching a demo of what to expect on our own phones, or phones provided. Inspired also by apps where you can report incidents encountered within your local area, this brilliantly sets up the mobile device convention. We’re immersed in this digitised world, navigating the streets of Shoreditch. A map is also provided if it’s preferred to follow the course manually.
Split into seven sections, we hear Salter’s story unravel. We follow her journey to the theatre as she encounters passers by and attempts to find her way. Slater is endearing, our host for the next 75 minutes. She informs us of how she feels, we gain that sense of confusion and frustration felt when asking for help, we capture the unforgiving nature of passers by not taking the time to listen, but instead instantly reporting Salter for causing a ‘commotion’ on their apps. Salter’s testimony intertwined with video clips featuring fellow Access All Areas ensemble members and snippets of the Slater and her journey.
The Interrogation is ambitious; we instantly gain insight into Salter’s story which is important. The experience itself is easy to follow and accessible, the GPS system very good. Each point expanding on Charlene’s story further. The walking tour element is great and fits well with the show’s themes, it’s a great opportunity to explore East London further and visit spots perhaps not as well known. A unique, considered experience!
Review written by Lucy Basaba.
The Interrogation was shown at both Rich Mix and the Battersea Arts Centre from Tuesday 28th September until Sunday 3rd October 2021. To find out more about the experience, visit here…
To read our interview with writer and performer Charlene Salter, visit here…