#Nofilter is an elaborate mixed media production, set in Stepney café My Friend Louis. This production blends theatre, dance, photography, film and live music to create an evocative piece of experimental theatre.
#Nofilter is a complex production, centering around the stories of a group of traumatised misfits, controlled by a charismatic yet malevolent master. The show is dark and gritty, with a heady gothic aesthetic and very weighty subject matter. The show explores mental illness through its characters, touching on depression, obsession, gender identity, substance use, self-harm and eating disorders. The performance is frequently violent, with the performers taking turns to showcase and battle their demons on stage, often torn between characters physically embodying hope and despair.
Many things about this production worked really well. The choreography, beautiful and intense, was executed perfectly to display the feelings of fear, grief, sorrow, self-loathing, pleasure and hope. Some of the scenes were directed superbly and were absolutely breathtaking. The soundtrack was brilliant, perfectly suiting the dark mindset the characters were inhabiting, and the space was amazing, with the actors and audience members able to move through multiple performance areas, creating intrigue and engaging the audience with the diverse settings of the show.
The main issues I had were with the content. The performance featured multiple character narratives, which were all quite complex, and the connection between the storylines was not always clear. It seemed a bit far reaching to explore so many themes in one production, and this compromised the plot overall. The production also featured a live vocalist who, for me, fell a bit flat.
#Nofilter is an ambitious production, trying to say a lot through a multitude of mediums. But it is also a subjective performance piece, which would resonate differently with each audience member. Creative, beautifully choreographed and well executed, it is definitely an experience worth catching if the opportunity arises.