The Independent, Mar-2008

From the The Independent Weekly, 06-Mar-08

Reviewer: Jo Vabolis

Adelaide Fringe review - I Might Be Edgar Allan Poe, Collective Unconscious

You don’t need to be familiar with the writing of American short story creator, poet, editor, and critic Edgar Allan Poe to be absorbed by this production from Western Australian company Collective Unconscious. The play was written by Dawson Nicholls (who originally performed the piece during the 1998 Adelaide Fringe Festival) and features David Hayward in the role of Joseph Walker, a patient at a secure mental health facility.

Walker (and a host of other characters, all played by Hayward) untangles a spiderweb of perspectives on his life and the life of the man he may or may not be, Edgar Allan Poe. What are the themes in our lives? Who can interpret them? Can anyone else ever really know our thoughts? This is an exploration of perception filled with darkness, torment, emotion and humour, delivered with an energy and intensity that is unwavering from the beginning to the heart-breaking end.

Hayward has described the opportunity to tackle the play as one of major achievements of his life. His two-hour solo performance is an outstanding display of characterisation, and is incredibly moving. A must-see. The Promethean until March 16.