Famishedfuturefeeders Robert the Cat Metro Arts 1280x720

‘Famished Future Feeders’ // Metro Arts

Pair a cyberpunk aesthetic with an elementary commentary on the decline of the environment & societal regime and you have Famished Future Feeders, Metro Arts & RobertTheCat’s latest new theatrical production. Society is governed by computer servers, food is scarce and it’s a man eat man world. Quite literally as cannibalism is the new norm. 

With an original score composed by Joe Glynn, the sound design featured bass heavy electronic music that was both catchy and effective in establishing the futuristic, cyberpunk setting. Working as an underscoring for scene transitions, it was a driving force within the show and a much needed energising source during slower moments. 

The story itself, written by Jules Broun, explored some interesting themes and ideas but ultimately lacked clarity and concision. Opening with a four way split scene, all the characters are introduced simultaneously but none are allowed the time for the audience to actually get to know them. With every conversation interrupted by another and the lights flicking from stage left to stage right, keeping up with the narrative was difficult. Although, the characters did seem intriguing, their dialogue and development hindered their relatability and appeal. Broun’s effort in creating relationships between characters mostly involved them either finishing each other’s sentences or repeating each others word after a quick glance at a thesaurus. Although, witty or funny or humorous at times when it began to occur in every scene it quickly became predictable and hindered the pacing of the play. Ultimately, Broun was successful in creating an interesting and colourful world that just needed a finer attention to details to truly hit home their reflection of today’s climate. 

Directed by Lisa O’Neil and Anatoly Frusin with a cast of QLD Tafe Acting Alumni, the staging had a few successfully comedic moments. Described as a ‘bleak comedy’, Famished Future Feeders found its best moments when it stuck to this genre. With the character of Fuge’s limbs being harvested throughout, these moments of gore were approached with an over the top physicality, sawing soundscape and tongue in cheek use of costuming to create an amusing illusion. However, when action became more dramatic some blocking choices were confusing and came across as pretentious rather purposeful. 

The performances of the cast were energised and bold. The pacing between their lines was quick and rhythmic. However, it often felt disconnected and inauthentic. Whether this was due to jarring dialogue or a lack of character chemistry, it resulted in a plethora of vocal patterning that didn’t allow characters to feel in a scene together. In saying this, each actor had strong moments. The relationship between Lynx and Byte, played by Lachlan Orton and Aaron Whitney respectively, was full of humour with the two actors having moments in which they fed off each other’s energy successfully. Orton provided Lynx with enough dramatic flair to counteract his pessimistic nature, giving them a likeable aura. Whilst Whitney’s oblivious wit and careful handling of their partner, made Byte Lynx’s perfect match. 

‘Famished Future Feeders’ was bold in its delivery but ultimately left audiences hungry for more depth. With flashes of humour, a glimpse into an imaginative world and moments of physical hilarity, it should certainly be applauded for its effort at starting up a conversation. However if the conversation is to continue a more concise, nuanced approach should be applied.

‘Famished Future Feeders’ performs until Saturday 13th July at New Benner Theatre in West End. For more information visit their website.

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