This play from the young cast of the Lund Theatre Company continues their tradition, as seen in last year’s Fringe production Let’s Talk About Porn, of using real-life transcriptions as their script, otherwise known as verbatim theatre. For this year’s show, the cast read from a variety of perspectives on the impact of technology on the lives and privacy of individuals. This approach could prove innovative, using actual viewpoints to emphasise the real life consequences of our pursuit of technological evolution. However, this approach sadly translates into a scattershot jumble of multiple voices shouting for attention, with the rapid cuts between speakers leading to a general feeling of incoherence that is hopefully unintentional.
Whilst the cast do give their all in their performances, despite a few noticeable missed cues and fumbled lines, they are sadly let down by their material. It particularly doesn’t help that the play opens with a flurry of extensive technological information that comes across as somewhat alienating for the non-tech savvy members of the audience. The use of audience participation also doesn’t help matters, with the pace of the show grinding to a halt so that the required audience member can be prompted to deliver the next line of dialogue. The application of this technique is also somewhat inconsistent, with the audience given copies of what appears to be the script, yet only one or two audience members are required during the show’s duration.
Whilst the production of Nothing To Hide cannot be faulted in its ambitious approach, the end results create the impression that this young cast may have bitten off more than they can chew. Verbatim theatre does provide an opportunity for the documentary format to be replicated on-stage. However, its application in this context results in a confusing experience that unfortunately obscures the points that it aims to make.