The four-time Dora Award winner Damien Atkins has numerous credits to his name as a playwright, writer and actor including The Gay Heritage Project, Unidentified Human Remains, Hosanna and The Matthew Sheppard Story. His latest work, We Are Not Alone, is a crafty piece writing that attempts to answer the question, are we alone in the universe?
Whether you believe in UFO’s or not, this show makes a compelling case for life in outer space, but that’s not why you should see it. From the start, Damien dismantles any notion of a fourth wall, speaking directly to the audience. By maintaining eye contact throughout the ninety-minute show, the experience shifted from voyeuristic to participatory, ensuring all eyes stayed locked on him. His timing is only matched by the artistry of the lighting and sound design which makes Damien’s incredible character work, larger than life.
One of the things this show did that I wish more performances would do, is arrange the seating in a semi-circle which allows the audience to see itself, thereby deepening the intimacy and reinforcing the group experience. The ninety-minute show moves at a quick pace, however during the conference scenes, Damien’s own character is overshadowed by the number of people he portrays from the UFO conference, and like most conferences, it could be cut in half or better yet, bring in more of Damien’s experience.
We Are Not Alone is a magical journey about the possibility of life in outer space and a potent reminder that whatever you believe, we are not the centre of the universe. On until January 26, 2019?.
We Are Not Alone
Crow’s Theatre, Toronto