(…) The space is an integral part of the evening, as central to the event as Cat Kidd herself, or her text. Squint and you have the raw, harsh world of the play (South Africa’s savannahs). Squint again and the street lights coming through the trees through the industrial space’s windows is the orange moon. And Kidd dominates this space with a huge presence and yet without busy-ness…and she IS like no other solo performer I have ever seen.
The text, with its almost invisible patterns and rhyme schemes, is brilliant – 80 minutes of stories told which, in an odd way (an organic way, if you’ll permit me to enlist jargon) create their own chronology. The tale is of a mad artist, exiled by critics to the planes, who must relive the diagnosed madness of her childhood to find the violent peace which wild Africa might offer. Toward this end, she uses/inhabits the figure of the hyena who, in nature and in lore, is a chimera—shape-shifter, scavenger, savage, witch, whore, but, above all, a survivor.
Kidd pours words, turns of phrase and images over us, separated into cantos which each have a set of rhythms and themes. Sometimes the passage is one of life in a modern world, but in one glorious one it is about a connection made with a dying lioness (whose eyes we see in film projected on the rear wall) who, like the central character, is a victim of modernity. (…)
Continue reading at charpo-canada.blogspot.com/2011/10/review-hyena-subpoena.html