Are we not drawn onward to new erA @ Queen Elizabeth Hall (Southbank Centre) Review

Post 2020 and certain aspects of humanity have become prevalent. A fast paced world pre 2020, lockdowns forced many to slow down and appreciate the natural beauty around us – our natural world something perhaps taken for granted before, now a sanctuary. How to better look after it, a priority that although had been stressed before, became more urgent and still is! Addressing themes of climate change and social justice, Ontroerend Goed present Are we not drawn inward toward new erA, a mirror held up to humanity on the brink of collapse or change.

With only an apple tree placed centre stage, do we very slowly watch this powerful symbol of humanity slowly dismantle, and a materialist/consumerist construct manifest around this. Evocative of the Adam and Eve biblical tale, once a bite of the sole apple on the tree is taken, does the meaning of life shift and become confusing – Ontroerend Goed now navigating a once bare stage, now adorned with multi-coloured plastic bags that appear from the heavens. A bronze, imposing statue erected by the ensemble towers over everyone – is marvelled by crowds and aspired to. Are we not drawn inward toward new erA a sustained, ‘of the moment’ piece of live art accurately articulating the chaos of the past 3 years, let alone the patterns we’ve upheld throughout history and where we’re headed societally.

Ontroerend Goed constructing an onstage world unique to the company, but resonant to us watching. Every word – perfectly placed, every move – meticulously performed to present a stark resolution. Silence used intentionally to depict a sense of weight – silence ensuring we’re not distracted and take in every interaction. The show a visual instruction manual as to how we progress into our new era – a refreshing, engrossing piece of political theatre signalling change.

Written by Lucy Basaba.

Are we not drawn inward toward new erA was shown from Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th July 2023 at the Queen Elizabeth Hall. To find out more about the production, visit here…

Written by Theatrefullstop