Review: Dream A Little Dream For Me: Sheep , National Theatre Wales & Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru

National Theatre Wales and Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru premiered the first performance of the new digital commissions which forms part of National Theatre Wales’ new digital season, Network on Saturday evening.

Network, NTW’s new digital programme aims to create opportunities for theatre makers while helping audiences, communities, and artists to come together whilst we are all kept apart.

In April, NTW in partnership with Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru invited Wales based artists to put forward innovative, exciting and human responses for live digital theatre during the ongoing lockdown period.

Dream A Little Dream For Me Inspired By Dreams

Three commissions were chosen to open the digital season, the first coming from multidisciplinary artist Emily Laurens.

Dream A Little Dream For Me: Sheep  is a short piece inspired by people’s dreams during the COVID19 lockdown period translated into puppetry performances accompanied by live, improvised music. Sheep, inspired by Carolyn, aged 45 from Cornwall.

Laurens has rendered the animation with intricate designs and cut-outs reminiscent in presentation to Terry Gilliam’s work on Monty Python’s Flying Circus. The piece itself appears to be rough around the edges with the occasional hand coming in to view or over prominent light distorting the action. It is such garish overtones that give the piece a dreamlike and nightmarish quality.

Edginess Meets Comedy Via Stage-Struck Sheep

For its edginess there is also an element of comedy, a stage-struck sheep that refuses to take his final bow before been dragged away in a Police Car (with appropriate string accompaniment mimicking a Police siren).

There are further pieces to look out for in the Network season which is delivered in two strands: New Digital Commissions in partnership with Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru and Play Readings in partnership with Sherman Theatre. The Network programme is also delivered in partnership with BBC Arts and BBC Cymru Wales.