Writers and Directors: John Askew and Hayley Thompson
Reviewer: Charles Tyrer
The Public Reviews Rating:
Utilitarianism. Can the pain of a few be justified for the benefit of the masses? It’s an age old question, and answering it takes one on an involved journey. Uncertain times within contemporary society seem to be leading individuals to extremes. 99.9 Degrees reminds us of the importance of not being static, and questions if we took responsibility for the state of things could we avoid the disastrous inhumanity of extremists’ behaviour?
Jackinabox Productions use an engaging combination of dynamic physical scores and dialogue to investigate the inner cores of five hostages. John Askew’s and Hayley Thompson’s script succeeds in subtly alluding to capacious political issues; the characters are a microcosm of society, whilst they have been living in a world at boiling point, for the most part they pay little attention to broader issues. Now hostages of an anti-government group, one has to question whether their ignorance was only ever going to lead to such disaster.
The all-encompassing compassion and maturity within this writing are rare. It’s suggested that the hostages should have paid more attention to their own, as well as the world’s problems; this awakens the audience’s consciences… Yet the Company demonstrate an understanding of why society shies away from the real issues, and choose not to condemn, instead viewing it’s indoctrination as a tragedy. They liken society’s state as similar to a heroin addiction, implying that euphoria isn’t sustainable and when we wake up a complete lifestyle change will be needed to fully recover. This isn’t an in your face piece of theatre, yet it ignites a spark of energy to ‘do’ before it’s too late. We are at 99.9 degrees. The question is, what are we going to do about it?
Runs until 27 AugustEdinburgh Fringe: 99.9 Degrees - C eca,