Wishbone, Interference

Review in Issue 15-3 | Autumn 2003

Just as authors suffer the pressures of the ‘second novel’ syndrome, so Wishbone have found themselves expected to deliver an instant success follow-up to the award-winning Scapegoat. Their new show Interference is still feeling its way – but that is because Wishbone have taken the brave decision to push the boat out, creating a visually exciting and theatrically engaging show that develops themes and scenographic ideas from the previous production into more elaborate constructions, using a variety of techniques that include magic and illusion, intermingled live/recorded voice, and a terrifyingly difficult dislocated-action device where the characters seem to exist in parallel universes – a cigarette offered in one place arriving in the other…

Interference, like Scapegoat, is the story of a journey that results in a romantic encounter, Karen Glossop’s character Frances is the heroine/journey-maker and Paul Murray’s Bruno is the enigmatic ‘other’. There’s the further twist of an absent character, Frances’ brother Alec – the ambivalent relationships between the three characters an opportunity to explore themes of passion, identity, memory and loss.

In a year when much of the physical and visual theatre on offer at the Fringe has been comedy-based and rather lightweight, it was great to experience a show with ideas and images that nag the brain whenever you close your eyes: a giant image of Checkpoint Charlie in glorious Koda-color projected across the back wall; telephone conversations and snippets of radio broadcasts in many languages; inanimate objects that suffer from spontaneous combustion; a grotesque Uncle Sam cabaret character looming up from behind a screen.

It all adds up to a wonderful evocation of a world where nothing is as it seems, and all meaning and understanding is ultimately – well, an illusion.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Festival
Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. Aug 2003

This article in the magazine

Issue 15-3
p. 22