Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Fairytale Love for a New Age

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Fairytale Love for a New Age

Article excerpt

Byline: CLIFFORD BISHOP

THE MOST INCREDIBLE THING/PET SHOP BOYS AND JAVIER DE FRUTOS Sadler's Wells, EC1 THE inaugural winner of the Evening Standard's Beyond Theatre prize has been rejigged since its premiere a year ago. One thing that hasn't changed is the quality that this collaboration between The Pet Shop Boys and choreographer Javier De Frutos shares with some of the best fairytales -- that of a sense of wonder being wielded with the precision of a surgical instrument.

Hans Christian Andersen's fable about a king who promises his daughter and half his kingdom to anyone who creates The Most Incredible Thing is given a knowingly sardonic makeover by De Frutos. The winning device -- a magical clock that produces different biblical and allegorical figures when it strikes the hours -- becomes a much more rarefied entertainment: at seven, for instance, the deadly sins drape themselves over a red velour barre like the Hey, Big Spender! whores from Bob Fosse's Sweet Charity (except here some of them are men, and need a shave). …

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