I Am, Greenside @ Infirmary Street, produced and directed by Stacy Lynn Gould, is an interesting concept from Bo Productions USA with original music and story created and performed by a young cast, and that was one of my main reasons for going to review this show. In a world where so much of what comes to stage is based on existing material, any new theatre, particularly from young creatives, needs to be supported by as many people as possible.
This show is ambitious in its scope, perhaps a little too ambitious for this stage in their collective development as performers, but despite some obvious tightening up and “polishing” needed in some areas, it is still well worth taking a look at, as this type of theatre and this type of story can really only be created by young artists.
At its heart, “I Am” is a charming story of youth and still having all of those dreams ahead of you, still having that confidence that you can if you want fly high and touch the sky; a world where there are only doors of endless possibilities to be opened. In this story, which has some very interesting lines in its dialogue, we enter a world of almost “Alice In Wonderland” absurdity that at times works well, at other times loses a bit of direction and focus. There is a darkness approaching in this world though as that precious light of hope for everything to come risks getting put into darkness by other people and other events. This story is a dream-world trying to look over that hill where your future might be tinged with the regret of the view from the other side of that hill. “I Am” ultimately is a youth story from a young company and despite its problems in some areas it could probably never be made at another point in their lives, so is for that reason alone an important statement.
Is there a message here for any of us in the audience who have already passed that moment of unrealistic hope and optimism in our lives? Perhaps yes, and the answer might be not to switch all of your lights of your hopes and dreams on at once, but to leave some lights to be switched on as we get older and remember that we are all made up of stardust.
Greenside @ Infirmary Street
Aug 2-10, 12-17, 19-24
Country: United States
Group: Bo Productions
Review by Tom King