Monday, August 10, 2020

Fringe review: M: The Berlin Murders is a welcome site-specific show

M: The Berlin Murders show starts with a bang with the large cast exiting, entering, and moving through the audience at a lightning quick pace. It took some time to acclimatize to what was going on at the performance, as the rapid dialogue and entrances made it difficult to know what to watch or hear.

Thankfully, things settle a bit about ten minutes in and from there it was smooth sailing.

In M: The Berlin Murders there is a child murderer in Berlin, and everyone is on edge. While the police work hard to find the killer, a group of thieves and poor people take justice into their own hands. All very SVU/CSI, the plot is as tidily cleaned up as their television counterparts.

The production values are high. Some beautiful shadow play accompanies a simple set. The costumes are high calibre, especially for a fringe show, even if they don’t always hit the era. The show’s soundscape, coupled with the noise of rats, police sirens, and crickets in this outdoor venue permeates nicely through the space.

The performances are universally strong, as is the direction. Coming from a city where site-specific theatre is all the rage, there is hope that M: The Berlin Murders is the beginning of a revolution in Halifax for more.

M: The Berlin Murders continues at the Bus Stop Theatre Parking Lot (behind 2203 Gottingen Street via Maitland, Halifax) as part of the Halifax Fringe Festival. Visit halifaxfringe.ca for tickets and information.

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