THEATRE – WW1 Wardrobe Project, a thought provoking immersive experience

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The WW1 Wardrobe Project is an immersive performance, in which audience members are invited to imagine what their own lives may have been like during World War One; a time when women were reluctantly invited to work, and men to fight.

At a town hall meeting set up by the Women’s Institute in 1917, guest speakers, each with different jobs propping up the country, bring to life the reality of what their roles entail.

This show, by Immersive Response, requires a lot of audience interaction, as the actors improvise and interact with their guests, who are free to ask them questions about their experiences working on the home front – and try on the various outfits they have brought with them for show.

As I sheepishly tied a sling around a nurse’s arm I was asked if I had any men in my family fighting on the front, and found myself immediately naming my older brother, knowing that in a different time he would likely have been sent to fight; this performance proved both thought provoking and entertaining.

Perhaps it’s the 11.40 time slot, but the show seems to have failed in bringing in larger crowds, which makes the small audience in the room more responsible for the contents of the production than they may have liked.