It’s said that the unconscious is structured like a language; symbols, condensations and symptoms ready to be interpreted. In their extraordinary show, Missing, physical theatre company Gecko have devised a production rich with psychical imagery and effortlessly impressive choreography. The play is about Lily – an ordinary, thirty-something professional. After an overture in Spanish and Italian, the cast delve through the folds of Lily’s grey matter. Past and present flash, clash and overlap as the chain of signifiers grows ever longer.
Beginning with the most salient observation, the actors’ skill and athleticism is astonishing. The dancing and stylised interactions are performed with surgical precision – in reverse or looping sequences, it’s incredible to remember that what’s taking place is live. From exhilaration to ennui, the range of emotions the ensemble is able to conjure using just their bodies is mind-boggling. While the story is straightforward, the ideas communicated are fascinating. There’s the untangling of Lily’s subjectivity, from snippets of memory to the simple possessions which form her identity. Moreover, using various foreign languages reinforces the notion that though it may not make immediate sense, there is meaning contained. The result is a theatrical exploration of the psyche with phantasmagoric elegance.