Simon McBurney has crafted a singularly brilliant tour-de-force piece of theatre that is visually captivating and aurally intoxicating. The Encounter, conceived, directed and performed by Mr. McBurney through his theatre company Complicite, tells the story of Loren McIntyre, a photographer with National Geographic magazine who, through unexpected circumstances, finds himself lost in a remote part of the Amazonian rainforest with seemingly no escape while on assignment. Interwoven through this re-telling are moments shared by Mr. McBurney as he worked on the creation and development of this show.
The story alone is enough to fascinate; however taking a step beyond simple narrative, this theatrical piece goes to another level, immersing the audience in a cacophony of aural stimulus and sensation that does more than mere storytelling. The play becomes riveting, tense and immediate.
Each seat is equipped with special headphones which must be used as one cannot hear the show without them. Relying on a plethora of technology and inventive techniques, the performance is beautifully embellished and magical in its execution.
The show is a difficult one to describe. Because of its sensory nature, it really is a special experience and unlike anything else currently on Broadway. Its unique and wholly unusual vision is fresh and exciting while still retaining a base of solid plot and action.
Simon McBurney is wonderful in the role and gives an energetic and appealing portrait of a man caught in a nightmarish position and retaining his calm and sanity amidst an insurmountable situation. A true maverick, he rides the circumstances with a strength, determination and bravery that keeps him alive and, in the end, rescued.
This show is spectacular and I can’t recommend it enough. It is an experience that you won’t forget. Learn more at The Encounter.