Just when I thought all my luck had run out, I won something! Stush on Facebook gave me two tickets to go see Taboo last Wednesday. It is the first in my life that I ever won something and got it, so I am dedicating this review to my new found luck.
Taboo, written by Keiran King and directed by Eugene Williams has already become a must see for Jamaican theatre-goers. King’s Taboo was probably the most anticipated play for the summer as it is the stage on which former beauty queen, Yendi Phillips makes her acting debut.
Last Wednesday’s staging at the Phillip Sherlock Centre for the Creative Arts, showed the shared awaiting of the crowd, as I struggled to find a seat in the full house. The play starred Keiran King, Lisa Williams, Rodney Campbell and Yendi Phillips. King also starred in Last Call and Mr and Mrs Blacke, which were critically acclaimed for the brilliant writing and technical aspects and the Taboo audience expected nothing less.
The production of Taboo highlighted all the misconceptions of the current Jamaican society about the Existential Crises, employment, Depression, sex and the overall lives of the upper class and how one can have it all and still be unhappy.
I must say I was in love with the set. It was a modern and contemporary and very well arranged, which gave the play a more realistic feel. The use of bold colours were eye catching and also heavily laden with symbolism, gave the audience something additional to think about, since the colours were not representative of their traditional meanings.
The lighting used was also very effective even though not much was used. The chemistry between the characters was adequate and made the mood radiate to the audience through the somewhat open stage. The play was very funny and had me laughing right throughout. King made use of witty parts of speech and literary devises, which provided something extra for the largely intellectual crowd. Taboo, as the name suggested, was something out of the norm, as I would categorize it as, “Theatre of the Absurd”, an acquired taste for the VERY open minded. I love absurdities and difference and laud King’s effort for bringing a style of theatre to Jamaicans which many fear- because of taboo issues condemned by mores and norms.
My issue with the play was that the climax was not as intense as I expected. This probably was due to the fact that they were hinting toward it throughout the play in a ‘not so subtle’ way. The ending also left a number of patrons disappointed. Even though the issue was not resolved, it was not dealt with and the audience was not prepared for what I would call an abrupt ending.
To Watch Or Not To Watch? That Is the Question…
It made me sympathize with the characters and the notion of love and realized that in order for us to be free and happy, we must be true to ourselves.
Well, my expectations were really high and I consider myself a harsh critic, so maybe you will give it more ratings than I do. If you have an open mind and you can appreciate sexy cleavages, chiseled abs, jokes, a little colourful language and things out of the norm, then Taboo is for you.
For me it is the climax and ending that really makes a piece, so I give Taboo 2.5 out of 5 stars.
Thinking about it, it had laughs, a good concept, good actors and a really nice set, I think it is definitely something to watch and whether it was good or not… I want you to be the judge of that.