Bin Laden: The One Man Show @ The Moor Theatre.

It is difficult to picture a bigger juxtaposition than a white, light-haired Englishman portraying the life story of Bin Laden, which is the very intention in Bin Laden: One Man Show. Sam Redway is the sole performer in this thought-provoking and controversial play about the origins of Bin Laden and how he was led down his dark path of destruction.

The show begins with Actor Sam Redway offering out tea and biscuits, with the audience unaware he has already entered character and the show has  begun. This is in an attempt to break the ice and ease the audience before launching into his complicated life story. The idea of the show is to offer a new perspective, a new angle which may not have been explored before to show the motivations behind the man now labelled a monster.

The show is stylised somewhat as a sales pitch, ‘Bin Laden’ selling his self-help book to the audience and the show opens with the question ‘Who cares about leaving a better world behind for their children?’ It is common throughout the show for rhetorical questions to be asked of the audience, in almost an attempt for the protagonist to justify his actions and at the very least in an attempt to get the audience to somehow relate. There are many techniques used to try  coerce the audience into seeing the other side of the coin, and production does an excellent job of throwing some thought-provoking questions out there.

The performance from Sam Redway is dynamic, enthusiastic and thoroughly convincing as he takes us through a journey of love, loss and leadership. The aim of the show is not to make you side with the protagonist, but merely to help the audience gain an understanding as to why he came to be. The performance is a mix of light-hearted jokes, innuendo and comically-timed music mixed with the serious, politically-charged message. It is this juxtaposition which is key to ensuring the audience are open to debate and open to engage with what would seem an unengageable subject.


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