On my way to Bristol tonight to see ‘The Forbidden Door’ , I was accompanied on my journey by the most beautiful full moon. A moon that keep disappearing behind clouds, and then reappearing, showing its face to me, distracting me and drawing me in. Which was a bit tricky, as I needed to keep my eyes on the road, being the driver and all. As I settled into my seat and into our night of theatre, it felt only right that the story began with the love affair between the moon and the sun. How they loved each other so passionately. How they created the Earth. How this made the cracks in their love deepen (many a knowing laugh from the audience as we reflected on how having kids can do that to a relationship), and how they eventually came to a place where they orbited their child, but rarely saw each other. The moon, she hid her face from her lover, much as she did to me on my journey this evening.
What would you sacrifice for the one you love? That is the main question that is explored throughout the tale that was weaved for us at The Tobacco Factory tonight. We also explored the ‘don’ts’. The hare who was told not to open the black box. The three sisters who are told under no circumstances to open the forbidden door. As soon as we are told they shouldn’t, we all know they will, and that misfortune will befall them. Therein lies the fodder for the story that is shared. A tale of love, sacrifice, loss, legend and make believe that made me laugh, repelled me in places, (don’t ask me about the pig) made me sad, but most of all entertained me greatly.
Daniel Morden is a wonderful storyteller, crafting his tale in a very traditional style. The musicians Sarah Moody, Dylan Fowler and Oliver Wilson-Dickenson are accomplished and polished, and the music adds to the ambiance and mood of the piece. I am yet again awed at the skill of a solo actor who can memorise that much information with barely a falter. The Forbidden Door is traditional in its storytelling technique, but managed to make this ancient art fresh and accessible to a very eclectic audience. Proof that stories are not just for children, you should catch this show tomorrow night if you can and be transported to another world.
The Forbidden Door is on at the Tobacco Factory Theatre until Wednesday 4th February 2015.
– Review by Karen Blake