STAGE REVIEW: Opolis @ Alphabetti Theatre, Newcastle (21.04.22) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Exploring a timeline in (potentially) the not-too-distant future, Ali Pritchard’s Opolis is a dark exploration of where humankind might find itself if we continue sleepwalking past evolutions in the big-tech landscape.  

Combining themes of big data and the evolution of artificial intelligence, with the rise in capabilities of home-based assistants, Opolis explores a future where everything isn’t quite what it seems for those living in the physical world. Partly Matrix-esque in its placement of humans into a synthetic environment, and partly 1984-themed in its cautionary tale of mass surveillance and historical negationism, Opolis is a dystopian play that causes genuine anxiety about where society might be in the medium-term future and the impact of that culture onto the memories and behaviours of humankind. 

Though not introducing brand new science fiction themes, and slightly rushed in its presentation (the show runs at a relatively short 45 minutes), the power of Opolis is in its ability to create a clear narrative for its two-person cast to bring to life whilst exploring fairy complex ideas. A very good show, with a very strong story arc, Opolis could have used a little more time to build its ideas and create the type of anxiety that the end scenes leave you with. 

Opolis runs at Alphabetti Theatre, Newcastle until Saturday 7th May.

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