Rich Kids: A History of Shopping Malls in Tehran
Co-created by Javaad Alipoor and Kirsty Housley
Running time 70 minutes. Review Mark Courtice 27th July 2020
27th July 2020 to 14th August 2020, various dates and times.
Tickets and more information at https://electricdreamsfestival.com/
You will need an internet connection, a computer/tablet and a smartphone. For a richer experience of the show, please download the Instagram app in advance and make sure you are following @shoppingmallsintehran
A bright yellow Porsche lies tangled at the side of a road. Inside two youngsters lie dead; he’s the spoiled son of an Iranian government minister and she’s his girlfriend. Their world of drink, drugs and fast cars, all recorded on a glittering Instagram feed, cannot be further from the world of the ex-jihadi, now government minister who is the source of the money that pays for their toys
From this single event, this intelligent, clever and ambitious show explores politics, history, economics and ecology.
This is theatre grappling with important themes, but it’s also an invigorating example of the way that we’ll be telling our stories through new technology. Of course, this live online version of an Edinburgh show is driven by lockdown, but in contrast to some of the responses from more flat-footed theatres, here enquiring minds are exploiting the new tools of their trade.
There are layers within layers and what seems like rather trendy exploration of beautiful shallowness becomes complicated and complex, digging down into the way generations intersect and critiquing consumption by exploring two of its temples; the shopping mall and Instagram. An invigorating evening wrestles with the nature of time; there are ruins of ancient shopping centres in the desert, but human cruelty and stupidity are also making darker stains in the fabric of our world.
It’s sensitively presented by Javaad Alipoor and Peyvand Sadeghian, and there is craft and intelligence in how it’s all put together; everything is carefully explained before it starts- you keep your phone running Instagram and watch the YouTube channel on a screen. The colours on screen are rich and clotted the layers of sound surprisingly don’t distract, they just add texture, and so the presentation of this cheerfully informal show turns out to be sophisticated and finely calibrated.
Performers – Javaad Alipoor and Peyvand Sadeghian
Video Design – Limbic Cinema
Sound Design and Composition – Simon McCorry
Lighting Design – Jess Bernberg
Assistant Director – Kayleigh Hawkins
Production Management – Production Family