Super Duper Close Up is a solo show about anxiety. But it’s an anxiety that’s so entrenched, so multi-faceted and solidified it’s impossible to pinpoint a singular cause.
Jessica Latowicki, one half of company Made in China, presents a monologue about a woman going into a work meeting. This scenario then spirals to include a wedding speech, memories of a grandfather with Alzheimer’s, and references to inherited trauma from the Holocaust.
Wearing a dress as shiny as a Quality Street wrapper, Latowicki performs against a cheesy backdrop image of waterfalls, the kind of thing you find in a karaoke booth. Her actions are projected on a video screen above the stage.
The structure of the piece skilfully mirrors the flickering nervous energy of the character. The interconnected stories switch around, at one point dissolving into an elemental stream of consciousness reminiscent of Patti Smith’s Horses.
On one level this is a piece is all about a specifically female anxiety connected to performing a tireless routine of social niceties and self-improvements, all the while knowing that female characters of a certain type – angry, complex – are widely unmarketable and being one can hinder an artist’s career. This is coupled with an exploration of more universal sorrows, griefs, histories and fears.
This is a show with an exterior that glistens and twinkles like a Faberge egg, but its insides are filled with a swirling molten pool of sadness and rage.