Monday, 9 March 2015
BELVOIR’S ‘BLUE WIZARD’ dissected by me
There are moments during a show when you realise with sickening awareness that you are not its target audience. ‘Blue Wizard’ hit me with that fact somewhere between ‘I come from a crystal planet where everyone is gay’ and ‘I only eat cocaine and jizz’.
As much as Nick Coyle’s ‘Blue Wizard’ has been jazzed up since its inception at PACT centre for emerging artists in 2013, it still feels like a distinctly Fringe Festival show. The acting is patchy, the energy is lacking and until Coyle starts to integrate puppetry into the performance, the show itself is flat and thin.
‘Blue Wizard’ attempts to appeal to its mainly gay male audience with snide remarks every now and again, with Coyle’s gold lame underwear as costume and its content is squarely aimed at its demographic. Although I never felt uncomfortable, mostly I wasn’t amused either. The Blue Wizard, one of many hair coloured wizards from his home planet, known for partying and sexual freedom, lands on Earth as ambassador after winning a competition on his home planet. His comet crashes and left with just a wizard’s egg that takes 2000 years to hatch, he finds himself in an abandoned tip (perhaps Earth of the future). The egg hatches, the Blue Wizard becomes nursemaid and we realise his dilemma of time, love and sacrifice.
It is the play’s ending that almost redeems the one hour show. That and Steve Toulmin’s sound and Damien Cooper’s light show. Ralph Myer’s has crafted a design that is versatile and able to surprise us with what can emerge, be lit, found and created. In fact, if the first three quarters of the show didn't rely on someone who could act and with had more substantial material, the performance would have been more enjoyable for all of its audience, not just the gay male contingent.
However, the men in the audience were amused and love the ‘readings’ and ‘shade’ done by Coyle and there was a level of androgyny that gave it an intrigue. The problem with the show is that it was half-cooked and if not for the technical prowess at play, the thin nature of the show would have been doubly exposed.