(Peter Crawley’s article appeared in the Irish Times, 12/8.)
In both its architecture and its narrative, a city is built up of stories. Some are stacked high, others spread wide, still more buried deep. In fiction, the job of revealing the kinetic energy of a city and the teeming secrets of strangers has fallen to flaneurs, detectives or voyeurs – consummate observers all. This co-production between Anu and Performance Corporation suggests a more gentle approach: “a conversation with a city,” according to its subtitle, yet its writer Tom Swift and director Louise Lowe are conducting something closer to a survey in two distinct and cleverly compatible ways.
The show’s development began a year ago, with interviews conducted with passing citizens on Limerick’s streets. It now concludes, some 10 storeys up, in a secret location offering a panoramic view of the city. Here, disembodied voices embedded in Carl Kennedy’s excellent sound design encourage us to snoop; to peer across rooftops, into hotel windows, over bridges.