‘Gripping’ ’emotional’ ‘intimate’ C-O-N-T-A-C-T theatre show wowing Ottawa audiences
“Intimate,” “emotional,” “gripping,” “creative.”
Those are just some of the words show goers are using to describe the outdoor theatre show C-O-N-T-A-C-T, the new play that takes audiences on an auditory trip through the mind of a young woman who’s a little bit sad and doesn’t know why.
“I had no idea what to expect,” said Shawn Marshall, who saw the play with a group of friends during an evening show last week. “ I knew I had to bring my earphones and I knew I had to bring my cell phone. I’ve never experienced anything quite like this.”
C-O-N-T-A-C-T is the first gentle step towards live in-person theatre in Ottawa, as the outdoor show made its national capital debut at Lansdowne Park in the Glebe in late July after a successful run of shows in Paris, London, Rome and Toronto.
It’s theatre, but with a fascinating twist. No vocal dialogue, no seating and audience members follow the actors on their roaming stage throughout the neighbourhood as the compelling and heartbreaking story unfolds.
“I really enjoyed it,” added Ottawa resident Kathy Ryan. “I didn’t really know what to expect. I loved it. I was intrigued, I was caught up in the story. I found some parts amusing and some parts really emotional.”
What makes the experience so intimate is the fact that the audience is tuned into the main character’s voice, Sarah, played by the talented Lucy Sanci. It’s as if you are in her head and when she breaks out in full sobs, it’s hard not to shed a few tears.
“It was intimate because you are hearing what’s in her head, but nobody else here knows what’s going on unless they’re hooked into the headphones,” adds Deborah Krogan. ““It transports you.”
The actors in C-O-N-T-A-C-T do not speak. Rather, audience members follow the performance through a downloaded app and synced audio as two actors roam throughout Lansdowne Park and the Glebe. The journey begins when you’re told to follow a girl, but who? Then you see her and as she strolls by, you begin to hear her inner thoughts via the app. Over the next 50 minutes, Sarah invites you into her mind and into her heart as she struggles with feelings of isolation, grief, loss and acceptance – emotions that audiences alike can all relate to. Canadian Resident Director Charles Roy says C-O-N-T-A-C-T is an answer to our disconnected world.
“You get this window into somebody else’s soul just for a bit and then life carries on and you are left with this feeling of connection, which I think is the central thing,” he says. “(C-O-N-T-A-C-T) connects you to other people in a very beautiful, meaningful way.”
C-O-N-T-A-C-T runs from July 22 to September 5 with multiple showtimes between Tuesday and Sunday. Once you purchase your ticket, you will be directed to download the app and will be given location and other details for the show.
Click here to purchase tickets now and make C-O-N-T-A-C-T with the world again.
Presented in Ottawa by the Glebe BIA in partnership with the Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group and the City of Ottawa.
OTTAWA SHOW PRODUCED BY CONTACT SHOW CANADA AND THE GLEBE BIA, IN ASSOCIATION WITH ARIA ENTERTAINMENT AND WEF PRODUCTIONS