With their first production at Daniel Brunet’s new 3.0 vision at the English Theater in Berlin, A Fish Needs a Bicycle expands the boundaries of theater by introducing a third character of uncertainty: Twitter. The chilling real time window into the hate generated lower vibration cyberspace projected into the spare set just hints at the intervention this male-female team pulled off while trolling the undercurrent of cyber misogyny masquerading as “Meninists” seeking male rights.
Gem Andrews and Richard Gibb penetrated into this dark virtual world to create the English lower-class character of Mike, who has ambitions to win a contest for a one-way ticket to Mars offered by an authentic website, Mars One. The five chapters of his real-time video application comprising this theater piece hover between the comic and tragic as Mike’s real life interferes, revealing sexual fears and hatred of his mother, for whom he is the caretaker. Gibb’s fearless plunge into the inertia of male ego is, gratefully, balanced by the transporting appeal of Andrews’ original songs.
Richard Gibb and Gem Andrews led an engaging discussion after their show illuminating their archeology of the chilling Menisita Twitter feeds that became the Third entity for the Conversion of their piece.
The overall effect is more powerful than apparent on the surface, not only because Mike derides the feminine quality of number when his narrative structure, the five, is associated with Venus. This, along with the duo’s name, which overturns the seventies feminist phrase “a woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle,” reveals the subtle artistry guiding this innovative Brit “made in Berlin” collaboration that, paradoxically, evens the score.