21 October 2015 update: read the four star review of Mercury Fur here
Last night’s opening of Philip Ridley’s ‘Mercury Fur’ performed by Middle Child was an electrifying experience.
Set in a post-apocalyptic and lawless city in an age when a plague of hallucinogenic butterflies accompany societal breakdown, the play explores the lengths to which ordinary people may go to survive.
Middle Child transformed the third floor of an office building in Hull city centre into a site-specific dystopian hovel. The experience of being within the set makes the performance as authentic an experience as one could tolerate: oppressive, claustrophobic and utterly visceral.
The performances by the alumni cast were exceptionally vivid, and the energy and electricity was palpable throughout the two-hour performance.
The company, Hull-based and comprising solely of Hull Drama alumni, atrributes its growing success and profile to the advice, experience and grounding that studying at Hull provided. “Our time at the university afforded us the expertise and professional values that still underpin our work today.”
Founded in 2011, the company is supported by Arts Council England, Hull City Council and is now working closely with Hull 2017 City of Culture on work between now and 2017. In its four years Middle Child has produced 15 productions, toured nationally and gradually built its reputation as one of Hull’s most important producers of theatre.
Returning as an award-winning theatre company from the Edinburgh Fringe, Mercury Fur is the company’s latest show in Hull.
The play will run from 14th – 24th October in association with City of Culture.
The play is strictly 16+ and the play contains narratives of extreme violence, very strong language and themes that some may find distressing. Book tickets here: www.middlechildtheatre.co.uk.
Christopher Cagney (MSc Applied Social Research: Anthropology and Sociology, 2006)
All photographs: Jerome Whittingham