Review | Snuggle up with Our Sandman at Cool Change Contemporary

Our Sandman | Cool Change Contemporary | til 19th Jan | ★ ★ ★ ★ ½ 

Imagine a show where you get to snuggle up in a super comfy bed and share in a myriad of weird spoken dreams. Add sipping on chamomile tea, soothing aromatherapy and beautiful visuals that bring you to the blissful edge of your own conscious dreaming. Sounds divine right? Well, imagine no more: Our Sandman by Rebecca Riggs-Bennett is such a show.

Everything about this show is incredibly thoughtful. The performance space is set out like a temple of dreams, beds fanning out around a dais, upon which sits Riggs-Bennett as some High Priestess of Peaceful Sleep. The show itself is largely experiential as you are led into a pre-slumbering state through the use of sound composition and induced relaxation.

Once you lay down, allow yourself to relax and visualise the dreams that are spoken to you. Content moves through an elemental mix of recurring dreams delivered through pre-recorded interviews, all set to a somnolent soundscape. The recurring dreams all have an aching familiarity: they each touched at the edges of dreams I myself have experienced. The one featuring a speaking baby is particularly powerful, as are those that speak of war and leaving New York.

The true beauty of this show is how it carries you toward your own sleep state, achieved through suggestion and visuals which play across the ceiling of the performance space. During the final sequence, where the notion of earliest dream versus earliest memory is discussed, I found myself unravelling and becoming engulfed in a personal experience that was truly emotive and sublime. Of course, each participant will experience this final sequence differently, and that’s what makes this show so incredible.

Naturally, this isn’t the kind of theatre that leaves your heart-pounding. Quite the opposite: you leave refreshed, reinvigorated, beautifully buoyant. This show has come an incredibly long way since its inception in 2017. The result? A work that is simultaneously angelic, thought-provoking and incredibly wholesome. Offer yourself the opportunity to drift off into the arms of Our Sandman and enrich your soul with the sweetest dreams. Truly worth seeing.

Our Sandman by Elsewhere Rebecca will be at Cool Change Contemporary until Saturday 19th January. More information available from coolchange.net.au or grab your tickets here.

Scott-Patrick Mitchell

Image:- Tasha Faye

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