Review: Now.Here, Laughing Horse @ The Free Sisters (Venue 272)

The fact that this three-woman show (part of the Free Fringe) is based on a “200-mile performative hobby-horse ride from Wales to London” might seem to warn of over-conceptual artistic indulgence, but in fact multi-disciplinary performers Aimée Corbett and Vanessa Hammick, who undertook the 17-day journey – joined here by cellist and theatre composer Ellen Jordan – prove the least precious or pretentious of imaginative adventurers.

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The project began with them questioning the meaning of “nowhere”, be it as the (non-)place in whose middle Corbett supposedly lives (specifically rural Wales) or as the psychological locus that both women, underemployed and depressed, were seeking to escape.

The transformative possibilities signalled simply by inserting the title’s full stop are buoyantly conveyed as the pair narrate and enact their quixotic odyssey, invoking the histories of both the ancient drovers’ roads they travelled and the characters they met en route, intertwining folklore with the latter’s own real-life tales, in an engaging mix of storytelling, music, poetic disquisition and physical comedy. While the script occasionally becomes overly expository or didactic, the piece’s overall spontaneity and charm winningly reinforce its message about the liberating powers of imagination.

Until 26 August. Today 2:05pm.