Writer: Abigail Docherty
Director: Lu Kemp
Reviewer: John Roberts
Docherty’s tale is based on a true story of two Japanese girls Sadako and Chiziko who when just two years old the Atomic Bomb was dropped in the village of Hiroshima, ten years later during a school sports day Sadako running the 600 meters fell down sick – it later turns out that she was dying of radiation poisoning – during her stay in hospital she heard about the myth of making 1000 paper cranes and if successful would be granted 1 wish – as long as you truly desired. Every year tonnes of paper cranes are still delivered to the village of Hiroshima.
Whilst this production is energetically performed by Julia Innocenti and Rosalind Sydney one felt that the pitch of the overall show was a little patronising, director Lu Kemp has opted to play with comedy more than pathos, and the tone of delivery feels slightly too young for its target audience, I also had to ask why the characters weren’t performed by Japanese actors…a shame as I feel this would have lifted the production to a greater level of appreciation.
Having said that, there are some fantastically realised moments in the production, the ripping of the paper screens, the dropping of paper cranes from the sky and the beautiful raising of a paper crane sun, however these moments we so little that it failed to emotionally grip me as much as I wanted, perhaps I went in with far too higher expectations of the production, or perhaps the company went in with far too little!