Review: Doppelgängers

Ghostly apparitions grace the Corpus Playroom

Cambridge Theatre doppelgangers monologue one-woman show

As Footlight Luisa Callander, the one and only act of the night, suggested, Doppelgängers is a sly pretext for her to steal the show all for her own. She pulled it off. Big time.

After a short introduction, where we are told that last June she met a real-life dopplegänger of herself at a comedy show in London, Luisa launches into her metamorphoses. The first character she steps into the shoes of is one who claims to be the first ‘umbrella-dancer’. What was most enjoyable about this one character was the irony which addressed the aspiration to be original at any price, even when that entails doing something so apparently useless.

One woman. One stage. One audience.

From Sisi Sorandon, a Virgin Airlines flight attendant, to Pam(phlet Miracle), the boring loner unaware of her own situation, to Little Mazey Morris, the oldest of child stars (at 85 years of age), Deeny Jack, the frustrated ghost hunter complaining endlessly about the trickery that she calls her job and Shanet, a full-time mum yet part-time relaxation specialist, this one-woman show weaved between wildly different and quirky personalities to remarkable effect.

The ever-intimidating task of one person donning different accents and personalities under one glaringly white light was carried off impressively by Callander, with the show largely owing its success to her quick-firing instinct in changes of mood, posture, and instinctive mannerisms.

Some ghostly apparitions grace the Corpus playroom.

Even more important however were her incredibly expressive facial features. Besides that, her jokes were far better than I had expected and she even managed to get a cynical Cantab like me to relax, have a good laugh and leave the existential questions for another time.

In the end, how can you be sure of anything anymore? By the end, I wasn’t even sure if she was herself or still playing one of her characters, with the audience leaving the Corpus Playroom feeling distinctly disorientated. I’ll let you disentangle this web of analysis and surreal self-referentiality as I enjoy the aftermath of this compellingly funny one-woman show.

Doppelgängers is likeable, witty and a compellingly commanding one-woman show. 

4/5 Stars