Darkly amusing exploration of father-daughter relationships at the Brighton Fringe

Tribute Acts offers a multi-media show about hope, disillusionment and father-daughter relationships at this year's Brighton Fringe.

Tribute Acts. Picture by Helen Murray
Tribute Acts. Picture by Helen Murray

TheatreState co-directors are Tess Seddon and Cheryl Gallacher. They make shows that celebrate the weird and alienating aspects of 21st century life, as spokesman Steve Forster explains.

“Everyone wants their dad to be a hero. But what happens when your heroes let you down? Cheryl and Tess have childhood memories that are full of smiling men in suits promising to make life better: Tony Blair winning the 1997 election, Bill Clinton playing the saxophone, Pierce Brosnan saving the world. Their left-wing, suited dads felt like they were one of these ’90s new men too.

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“But Cheryl and Tess grew up, Tony took us to Iraq, Bill lied, Pierce lost Bond and their dads left home. As disillusioned adults trying to survive the New Labour aftermath, the young women wanted to know why their personal and political heroes lost our faith so spectacularly.

“So Cheryl and Tess hit on the idea of asking their dads the tough questions. But after years of not speaking openly, they decided to interview each other’s dads instead. And they filmed it.

“Tribute Acts is a darkly funny and boldly honest exploration of father-daughter relationships and the illusions we create when we want to hope. It enjoyed a successful run at the 2015 Edinburgh Fringe. Now TheatreState is taking a full-length, newly revamped version on a national tour that gives Brighton audiences the opportunity to see the show when it visits The Marlborough Theatre on Wednesday and Thursday (May 25 and 26).

“Frank video footage is at the heart of Tribute Acts. The fathers are projected as giant heads, constantly moving throughout the show. As the daughters question and probe, the men lose their caution and begin to divulge their views on their lives, their daughters and their own hopes.

“Hoping for a moment of profound understanding between estranged father and daughter, Cheryl and Tess soon get more than they asked for. As the camera turns on them, their mission to understand why their heroes failed them begins to ask the question: why do we long for a hero in the first place? “Complex and poignant, Tribute Acts will strike a chord with anyone who has mixed emotions about their parents and concerns that their world will become our own.”

Also at the fringe

The Moscow State Circus will be at Preston Park from today until Wednesday (May 25) with a new production Seven Zhelany (tickets 0844 856 5555). Spokeswoman Asia Sawicka said: “The Moscow State Circus returns to the UK with its latest and greatest production to date, based on the Russian folklore story of Cvetik-Semicvetik or The Flower with Seven Colours by Valentin Petrovich Katayev where each of the petals represents a wish and is the perfect backdrop for what is undoubtedly the greatest and most famous circus on earth.”

Visit www.brightonfringe.org to find out more.

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