Don’t Look Me In The Eye
Day six of The Flash Theatre Festival began with an unexpected chance to see Don’t Look Me In The Eye, devised and starring Theo Ramwell.
I did not expect to get a chance to see this particular show but I am really pleased I did. In the intimate space of The Crown Room, we entered to find Theo already in character sitting in a chair, head down and doing his best to control a physical tic.
Our character then goes on to tell us the story of parts of his life. Describing in great and well researched detail, he tells us of his inability to socially react the way that his family and others expect him to. Often labelled as psychotic and anti-social he continued to develop. Still with no clue as to the real reason for the way he was he describes how he learned to mask his emotions while coping in the outside world.
His success in later life as an engineer and electronics expert come as a surprise to him as much as others but his ability to cope brings the joy of love into his life and he becomes a father. This really is the story of a young man who believed he could achieve anything despite what life and genetics had dealt him.
It was not until he was 39 that the doctors finally diagnosed him as a sufferer of Asperger’s Syndrome.
This performance was based upon the New York Times Best Seller of the same name by John Elder Robison. If you are going to base it on other peoples experience then a New York Times Best Seller is a great choice.
Theo showed great empathy with his character and his portrayal was never melancholy or full of self-pity. Instead, he showed the brilliance but social ineptness of a true Asperger’s sufferer fully for us to see.
All in all a first class performance that delivered a great story in an honest and open style. I am very pleased I was able to see Theo in action. Great job!