“The most visual medium for me is radio. There’s nothing more visual than sitting in the car while the radio is playing” – Robert LePage.
Following her Grandmother’s death, a girl is faced with the overwhelming task of clearing out her house. As every artefact of her Grandmother’s life passes through her hands, the girl is surprised to find a tape recorder with a series of homemade recordings. As the girl listens to these piecemeal recordings, she finds the voice of a woman she never knew existed. A much younger Grandmother is describing a great mystery of her life, and the girl is getting just as wrapped up in it as the Grandmother was when she sat in the basement and secretly recorded. But can we trust the Grandmother as a reliable narrator? Not to mention becoming suspicious of the girl herself…
The Basement Tapes offers an audience auditory pleasure of immense detail. Part audio work, part live performance, this work brings the past into the present through mixed media. As the granddaughter hears these tapes for the first time, both audience and solo performer fight not to drown among the waves of secrets and memories in the basement.
Warning: Contains coarse language
The Basement Tapes premiered at the 2017 NZ Fringe Festival. It was called “A spooky little tale which is very satisfying” by the Wellingtonista, “A fantastic, unmissable, focused piece of theatre” by Art Murmurs, and heralded as a favourite of the festival by Pantograph Punch, who said "It’s exciting to see a show that pits an audience's senses against each other, playing with what’s physically there versus what we hear.”