Red Bastard

By Alanta Colley

This is the Fight Club of the theatre world. You will be shaken, you will be commanded to action, you will be stripped down to the naked truth, you will confront the walls of your comfort zones and push through them. Red Bastard (Eric Davis) has locked the doors and we are privy to the theatre of life, of which we are all but players. The only fate worse than revealing your most private hopes and dreams to this bunch of strangers is what Red Bastard will do to you if you don’t.

This show is not for the faint of heart – Red Bastard is a frenetic, fierce, demanding, monster; a mutant in a red suit with piercing eyes who refuses to be ignored. He will not take no for an answer.

The message is clear: This Is Not Television. You can be seen. You can be heard. You will be heard. There’s no escape. There’s no corner to hide.

Red Bastard is searching hungrily for a truth. A thespian infuriated by the frozen sentimentalities of mimicry and lies in theatre. He is hunting for the intimacy of honesty. He demands us to strip away fear and compromise and to shout openly what we dream for.

This show is the shared nightmare of many a folk. You pay for a nice evening to sit in the dark and receive a piece of art, then this guy refuses to let you even stay in the same place during the show. The fourth wall vaporised within seconds of the performance commencing. Yet, it appears just as many are fascinated by this dangerous social experiment. What happens when you put people under this sort of pressure? Maybe it’s the risk takers, maybe it’s those looking for a new level of intensity in their theatrical intake, maybe it’s people attracted to fear. Whoever they are, they packed out the Butterfly club on this particular night. And it’s these people who’ve granted Red Bastard awards at every major fringe and theatre festival around the world.

Is this a transformative experience? Is there honesty when people reveal truths while being yelled at and threatened? Maybe the payoff is the relief of the show ending. You be the judge.

Don’t take anyone with a heart condition.

Red Bastard is on at The Butterfly Club until April 20