Part of the Live @the Library Season at Oldham Library Kris Overend’s Little Finn Productions presented three half hour shorts improvised and acted by different age groups 11-14 years 14-18 yrs and a solo performance by 19 year old Lucy Barker. Their common theme was “Imagination” and each play intrigued in different ways.

In “The Right to Think” the 12 actors explored the world of work 157 years in the future to a world where future employees had to earn the right to think by performing incomprehensible tasks for an omnipotent employer. In a world where it was impossible to guess how to achieve any targets and where the mysterious employer finally appointed her own son there was no alternative but to over power their masters. Good strong performances by Willem Baborovskie and Jess Parker along with great timing and good character play made the half hour zip by.

The second play was peopled by a dozen beginners whose voices were sometimes lost in this 100 seater studio space. However, with no props and relying again on improvisation these youngsters drew their audience into a pleasing time slip mystery involving blood vows, dark subways and lost generations. A sound attempt by the whole cast.

With “Do Not Update” 19 year old Lucy Barker had absolutely no trouble keeping her audience involved. Envisaging a world where Apple had removed all power from the world except its own and while attempting to recreate the lost art of painting she recalled in stilted sentences how technology has created an eternal now. Apple had wiped away the disastrous consequences of ever more intrusive apps on the world. Parent Tinder meant that children could swap parents for the day. Criminal watch had turned from a defensive to offensive app and apple now controlled people’s brains by means of an ichip! Chillingly thought out and excellently delivered Lucy’s performance topped off a truly imaginative evening.

Producer Kris and Faye Harrison of the Southport Garrick have done a brilliant job with these youngsters and their enthusiasm showed.

Reviewer: Elaine Bermitz

Reviewed: 16th June 2016