by Isabella Javor

French theatre group Le Festin de Saturne deliver a wild and engaging clown show, War Pig, following the adventures of young Private Juan and Captain Fidel Castra off to war. This mad show starts hilariously and grotesquely as we watch the very tall and lean Juan happily masturbate to the captain’s private magazines while looking up to clock the audience. We find ourselves watching a slickly choreographed sequence of the Captain signing and stamping Juan’s fingers – as his papers – to confirm his acceptance into the army. Launching us into a smoke-filled epic battle where random things, including a chicken, drop from the ceiling.

Full of imagination, playfulness and at times a little uncomfortable.

Most performers faces are painted white, and their costumes bolster their characteristics very well, amplifying the physical comedy. Captain is bearded, stern and dominating and Juan is very tall, lean and strangely docile. This makes for a comedic coupling. The audience are in tears of laughter watching their celebratory picnic together, as Juan is continuously ridiculed by the Captain. Beautiful music is played as they sip their wine and gracefully squirt it over the table at each other. Not only are Le Festin se Saturne presenting a funny show, but they also explore the masculine association with war, and the need to live up to the expectation that boys are excited by battle. The one time a female performer appears is only for about a minute; when the mother enters and they both breastfeed from her before sexually assaulting her. I’m not sure if this was meant to be a strange and elusive political statement, but it made the audience feel very uncomfortable.

War Pig is most definitely worth a watch, it is full of imagination, playfulness and at times a little uncomfortable. These are two very talented clowns.