London International Mime Festival

25th January 2008 at 00:00

These days, finding a decent mime show in London is like banging your head against an imaginary pane of glass. Thank heavens, then, for the London International Mime Festival, a genre-defying explosion of dance, comedy and physical theatre, which brings its spectacular stay in the big smoke to an end this week.

The festival interprets "mime" in its broadest sense. Pep Bou's huge shimmering soap bubbles dance to music composed by Debussy and Faure, while the Gandini juggling troupe envelope their craft in heretofore unseen layers of irony, laying on a show about, ahem, "the absurdity of throwing and catching".

Afterwards, if remote parts of your chin are still in need of a stroking, you can catch Woyzeck (above), an adaptation of the George Buchner play about a German soldier driven mad by military experiments, from Korean theatre company Sadari Movement Laboratory.

Meanwhile, Silent Tide is a classier breed of puppet show that eschews kipper-whacking in favour of a thoughtful meditation on migration, accompanied by a ramshackle orchestra that includes steel pipes played by the flames from a propane heater.

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