Faced with imminent departure from the European Union, taking stock of values through art and exploring the past seems an important and worthwhile pursuit. Two Destination Language production, Fallen Fruit, gives us an opportunity to do so whilst proving simplicity of design can convey the most effective messages. Written and performed by Katherina Radevaby we get an immersive insight into the Bulgarian born theatre maker’s life in the 1980s through the utilisation of little more than cardboard boxes.
We are charmed by Katherina from the minute we arrive in the theater as she welcomes and chats to her audience while sipping from her mug – a little foreshadowing, which demonstrates her commitment to small details, that make the show feel so special. As intertwining stories are told, we get a feel for what life was like in a divided society through the lens of the vibrant memories of a child. Whilst feeling pertinent to the world around us today and the different choices we have in response to it, we are lead through the historical landmarks, like the fall of the Berlin Wall, which have undoubted emotional weight. The most brilliant moments however, arise from the deeply personal and domestic, such as when the tipsy tilting of a cardboard box dog conveys a mishap with unattended beer glasses.
While not shy of political issues and the darker effects on people living through tense and changing times, the audience feel safe and welcome. The childlikeperspective of the memories portrayed allow us a way in that feels authentic and the more people than politics focused storytelling offers a refreshing take adding up to an extremely enjoyable and thought provoking experience.