Creator: Louis Vanhaverbeke
Multiverse is an ever-evolving performance art piece that incorporates an energetic and emotive soundtrack, and subtle light changes with the almost dance-like physicality of Louis Vanhaverbeke to create an innovative and dynamic production.
Perhaps the best thing about Multiverse is that every person could come away having seen and experienced something different. The responses expressed in the post-show discussion highlighted how this is a piece that will change in the mind over time. Multiverse invokes different thoughts, ideas, and theories in the mind of each viewer and at times even the performer. The ending felt like an analogy for the way in which the world seems to have gotten smaller but no less confusing as technology has changed our environment irrevocably. At moments near the end, it felt profound as the pieces were pulled together. However, this was not the view of everyone one as other audience members felt that the performance focused on ideas of entrapment, development and many others.
Multiverse is a one-man performance and Vanhaverbeke makes the stage his own. The timing is impeccable. The way in which the music and soundscape have been edited to work with each movement is simply incredible when one becomes aware that all sound and songs come from record players on the stage. Each record fed into the circular theme and each new prop added to this motif. Vanhaverbeke’s physicality and movement are very impressive and his background in visual arts and dance shine through. There were moments of lightness and comedy but also moments of stillness, in which Vanhaverbeke seemed to be connecting with the audience.
This is, however, an example of a production that should really have been a part of the recent fringe festival, rather than the theatre festival. Similarly, a better location may have been the Project Arts Centre, as its history of providing a home to innovative, sound, visual and physical art performances means its ethos is more in line with that of Multiverse than the Samuel Beckett Theatre. Fortunately, this doesn’t detract from the performance itself, and is worth a visit for any art or theatre lover, and perhaps also anyone looking for something inspiring and different for the evening.