Review: Penny Arcade at the Adnams Spiegeltent

NNF16. Adnams Spiegeltent. Broken Back. Photo: submitted.

NNF16. Adnams Spiegeltent. Broken Back. Photo: submitted. - Credit: submitted

A jam-packed Adnams Spiegeltent witnessed probably the most dramatically relevant, yet unbelievably irreverent, presentation that most of us will ever witness. This was a compulsively engaging tour de force by the energetic, self-styled Penny Arcade in a non-stop flurry of radical assertions. Many of these unexpected observations, shocked yet exuberantly moved all of us.

The joyfully anarchic writer and performer from New York broke every inhibition that most of us might have brought to that startling event. Legend tells us that Penny climbed out of her New York bedroom window at the age of thirteen to join what saner people might call the disenfranchised world of radicals, trouble makers, derailed lunatics - with more than just a sprinkling of visionaries and geniuses.

By the age of 20 she had become a star of the irreverent and a key player in Andy Warhol's Factory, well on her way to becoming one of the most influential performer's in the world. And the startled folk of Norfolk in that heretic arena shrieked with sheer joy at the originality and profound irreverence of this remarkably joyful and engaging personality. Penny Arcade has brilliantly moulded herself into a force of nature. Along the way she has forced her way into becoming an internationally respected writer and anarchic poet: she seemed to move every member of that jam-packed audience, whose enthusiasm often seemed to run towards joyful lunacy.

She energetically ran through many of the controversial issues of the day. Her joyful pin-sharp narrative included her observation that we have inherited a strange world where roses no longer have any scent: where we are all ruled by consensus and conformity: indeed, where too many of us have given up on thinking. She claimed that is hard work which is why so few of us do it.

Despite the devastating criticism of the world we seem to have accidently created, she had such energy and sheer passion that we all left passionately discussing her observations and feeling unexpectedly up-lifted. It might seem, she commented, that there is future for mankind if we never give up or compromise.


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Roger Haywood

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