Written for The List (issue 662)
Anomic is a brand new company, never before seen at the Fringe – but the style of the company’s debut, The Sum Of It All…, will ring some bells for Zoo regulars. Dan Shorten, Anomic’s artistic director, was also a co-founder of Precarious, and the marriage of performance and multimedia that made that company so invigorating is still a vital part of his work.
Anomic, however, isn’t simply Precarious by another name. The backdrop to The Sum Of It All… is a mosaic of projections and 50-inch TV screens – but Shorten insists that, unlike in some of Precarious’ shows, storytelling will take precedence over visual ingenuity.
‘With Precarious we always approached the subject matter from a visual perspective,’ he says. ‘At times the work lacked focus and clarity. I’m trying to focus very clearly on one character’s emotional journey.’
That character is Stanley Ayers, whose humdrum existence drives him to contemplate taking an extreme and disturbing decision. The show promises to be melancholic and introspective, yet energetic and stimulating – which, where Shorten’s concerned, needn’t be a contradiction.