Welcome! This is your first free article. Get more free articles when you sign up with your email.

Dual دوگانه

“Thought-provoking exploration of cultural identity”
FacebookTwitterLinkedIn

Peyvand Sadeghian’s one-woman show about her mixed British-Iranian heritage refuses to commit to any one style of performance. One moment Sadeghian is using drag to parody dictators, the next she is twisting her body in a display of emotive physical theatre. The result is undeniably thought-provoking but something of a mishmash.

The play opens with Sadeghian donning a turban, white beard and black gown as part of her transformation into “the dictator of fun”. The audience is encouraged to throw their arms in the air and copy Sadeghian’s moves not once, not twice but four times. By the fourth round, even Sadeghian is visibly wearying.

The other attempts at audience participation in Nastazja Somers’ production work better, particularly the inspired game show – Wheel of Fortune meets passport lottery – which takes a dig at the UK’s nonsensical immigration controls.

The show is littered with misunderstandings and stereotypes, from Sadeghian’s comic dictator to her broken translation of Farsi, highlighting the prejudiced lens through which Western countries can view the Middle East.

Al Orange’s video projections are in danger of stealing the show. A potted history of Iran, complete with hand puppets, archive interviews of Iranian leaders and diary-style extracts all feature, but the projections are most effective when showing footage of mass demonstrations, a red wash splashed across the wall casting the images of revolution in a bloody glow.

Ultimately, though, this is a piece about belonging – where do you belong if you’re “not to be carved up across continents”?  Sadeghian’s jolting physical theatre and the glitchy video footage point towards an unresolved feeling of being torn and stuck between two conflicting worlds.

Where are the European migrants in the UK’s theatre scene?


Related to this Review

Santi and NazSanti and Naz

Production Details
Production nameDual دوگانه
Venuethe Vaults
LocationLondon
StartsFebruary 19, 2020
EndsFebruary 23, 2020
Running time1hr
AuthorPeyvand Sadeghian
ComposerRoshi Nasehi
DirectorNastazja Somers
Set designerIsabella Van Braeckel
Costume designerIsabella Van Braeckel
Lighting designerAl Orange
Video designerAl Orange
CastPeyvand Sadeghian
ProducerPenny Babakhani
VerdictPeyvand Sadeghian’s thought-provoking exploration of cultural identity
FacebookTwitterLinkedIn
Add New Comment
You must be logged in to comment.

Your subscription helps ensure our journalism can continue

Invest in The Stage today with a subscription starting at just £3.98
The Stage
© Copyright The Stage Media Company Limited 2020
Facebook
Instagram
Twitter
Linked In
Pinterest
YouTube