Review: Feet of Clay

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Feet of Clay is a great play for any Pratchett fans. This intriguing murder mystery, set in a city filled with mythical creatures, is sure to get any enthusiast of the author loving this re-imagination of the Feet of Clay.

Being an Ooook! Productions play, the attention to detail in the use of props was very good. The star of the show is the puppets. Both the mastery in making them and the artistry in the puppeteering did not go unnoticed. The two massive Golems filled the stage and all of their interactions (either with each other, the other actors on stage, or with the audience) are very well thought out, almost as if they have their own personality. The puppeteers do an excellent job at conveying emotion through the Golems, controlling which one the audience felt they could trust upon first sighting.

The puppeteers do an excellent job at conveying emotion through the Golems, controlling which one the audience felt they could trust upon first sighting

When sharing the stage with such large props, the cast did a good job at not being swallowed by the puppets. One cast member who particularly stands out is Oggy Grieves. The projection of his voice is very clear, and he physically embodies each character that he plays, to the point where is it difficult to tell that they are being played by the same actor. was another cast member who has good diction and annunciation, and when they are on stage, your eye is drawn to them. There is also a strong element of humour dotted throughout which makes the audience laugh out loud. The delivery of the punch lines was executed well by most, although sometimes it can feel as if they are overemphasised and a little too forced.

The staging itself seems static at times making the stage seem stiff on occasions. There are two scenes which change the pace of the play and whilst these do bring some needed action and movement, they are few and far between which did have the effect of making the play feel quite long at some points. I did appreciate how the design team utilised the space of the theatre and having a set off the stage. This does look great as the audience first enters and the use of the stairs in one scene is very clever; however, it can be quite difficult to see all that is happening on this new down stage if sat a few rows back.

There is also a strong element of humour dotted throughout which makes the audience laugh out loud

Lighting is used effectively to demonstrate time and place which is useful as the set does not really change throughout the duration of the performance. Despite some tech mishaps, the cast did not waver on stage- a sign of confident actors. Amongst these is Nick Lemieux, who conducts the stage and the storyline well (despite a small wardrobe malfunction).

Overall, Feet of Clay is a good interpretation of the novel and a must-see for fans of Pratchett. If you have no previous encounter with the work, it could be a confusing storyline to follow but still a joy to watch, especially the puppets and the artistry behind moving them.

Image credit: Ooook!

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