Small cardboard boxes line the edge of the stage, some with letters written on them and some blank. Katherina Radeva appraises her audience, welcoming but with a nervous energy.
No one is sure what to expect and this show remains largely unpredictable, Radeva’s energy propelling it forward through monologue, storytelling, game show hosting and even a highly charged movement sequence.
One of the most interesting aspects of the piece is the combination of Radeva’s fiercely political and yet anti-political approach. She is consistently animated, recounting childhood memories of everything being red, the excitement and chaos of the changes and the current slew of MacDonald’s in Bulgaria.
The entire show is about political ideologies yet seeks to offer little explanation as to which she favours. Both systems have their flaws, lives are complicated and change is always hard. For those who can remember the unrest of 1989, this is likely to trigger plenty of memories and give insight into life on the other side of the iron curtain. For those less familiar with the time period, it’s an intriguing snapshot of a very different way of life.
The cardboard boxes rise and fall, representing tower blocks, people and decisions. Radeva’s costume gradually becomes more relaxed as her memories hurtle towards the present and a box of Nesquik represents the glamour of capitalism.
Occasionally disjointed but always engaging, Fallen Fruit is a timely reminder that everyone’s needs and wants are individual regardless of border or regime.