30 August 2008, The Scotsman
Theatre review: I went to the house but did not enter
IT'S telling that Heiner Goebbels refers to his latest work as "a staged concert in three tableaux", because the actual music content, divinely sung a capella-style by the four members of the Hilliard Ensemble, is part of a phenomenal soundscape designed by Willi Bopp. Noises from everyday items such as air conditioning and a wobbly spin dryer are foregrounded and carefully crocheted into this celebration of the extraordinariness of the ordinary. There is also a strong sense of dislocation and alienation of place, people and language in these surreal settings. The ticking clock in the monochrome room for TS Eliot's The Love Song of J Alfred Prufrock eloquently measures out a "life with coffee spoons" for about ten minutes before a word is sung. Maurice Blanchot's La folie du jour offers mysterious fragments of stories related by characters in a suburban house with windows and a garage but no door. However, it is the nobodies in the anonymous hotel room of Samuel Beckett's Worstward Ho intoning his mesmeric language like an incantation that are the most touching. These, along with other profound images and sounds in this slow-burning triumph, will seep into the memory for some time to come.
on: I went to the house but did not enter (Music Theatre)