This Is How We Die

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A dark, brilliant piece of spoken-word theatre from Canadian motor-mouth, Christopher Brett Bailey.

Image of This Is How We Die

@ The Arches, Glasgow, until Sun 10 May 2015

A bold title. A simple premise. A raving monologue. A twisted fantasy. A hurricane of lyrics. A dark, venting, ragingly brilliant piece of theatre from Canadian, Christopher Brett Bailey, whose motor-mouth never stumbles, falters, wavers, nor crumbles as he crashes on through a nightmarish, surrealist world towards an explosive (and LOUD) ten-minute finale. But…why?

Sat at a single, lamp-lit desk, an incensed Bailey begins before all members of the audience have even had a chance to sit down; his introduction, a captivating full throttle leap into the darkness of culture & language. It’s hard to keep up and Bailey won’t slow down to wait for you; he’s at the wheel and, whether you like it or not, you’re now buckled in for an extended and unpredictable drag-race, with occasional – and much welcomed – pit-stops.

His rapid-fire, beat-poetry delivery spits – nay, pukes – violently at its targets: don’t destroy the man, destroy the idea; don’t cling to the past; and don’t, under any circumstances, ever describe something as ‘seminal’ to a six year old. It’s quick, it’s funny, it’s dreamlike yet literal, but mainly it’s about the words: the meanings, the metaphors, the clichés, the connotations, the synonyms and – to be frank – if any of it really matters at all.

Sentences contradict themselves, morbid stories wander off on macabre tangents, ideas stop dead in their tracks as our performer decides he’s done with what he has to say, and yet you keep asking yourself: what does this all mean? Does it even mean anything at all?

It sounds like it does. It feels like it does. So sit down, strap in, shut up and listen. Just in case.