IndyFringe; PaperStrangers Theatre; written and directed by Jessica Strauss, May 6-8.
PaperStrangers Theatre company presents theater created from collaborative improvisation on a central theme, in this case the geographic absence of a loved one. The interdisciplinary piece melded theater, dance and music in an evocative way. Choreographer Tommy Lewey created visceral movement, eliciting emotional dance performances from actors not formally trained in movement. Atmospheric live music â ��� played onstage by Brothers Grimm (from Madison, Wis.) â ��� faded into the environment. Only at the end with an empty stage, do we realize the powerful role played by the original composition. Yet, the devised text falls flat, creating a mere surface exploration of love, loss and absence. Speeches from angsty two-dimensional characters detract from the complexly beautiful movement occurring in tandem. Childish humor and a playful awareness of theatrical devices provided welcome breaks from these overly intense characters.