Imagine entering a dream-like space and being shoved, or hugged, or, deserted, by a stranger.
These disarming scenarios are just some of the possibilities you’ll encounter at ALONE – an immersive and mysterious experience designed to challenge and explore human emotion. Those who take part are warned they “may be aggressively touched and moved or tenderly embraced”.
ALONE debuted in Los Angeles in 2013 and earned acclaim – and fans – for the disquieting psychological adventure it sends participants on. It’s coming to Melbourne in February, with its 45-minute walkthrough event, THE / / / / / SEQUENCE, beginning on Valentine’s Day.
“You’re forced to think a lot about your body moving through a narrative-free, contextless space,” an LA writer said about the experience. “Alone doesn’t try to teach you how to feel … Most of the discomfort is self-generated, which means it’s harder to shake.”
Co-creators Devon Paulson and Lawrence Lewis had been artistic collaborators in music, sound design, performance, installation and fine art for two decades. They wanted to engage audiences more directly and distinctly, so combined all of their disciplines to create ALONE, which has spawned many imitations but, until now, no overseas iterations.
“People who have been through our shows seem to fall in love with this new type of experience,” Lewis says.
The pair was lured to Melbourne by Jerome Borazio, the man behind St. Jerome’s and Laneway Festival, who experienced ALONE on a trip to L.A. and approached the creators about bringing the concept to Australia. Borazio has worked closely with Paulson and Lewis for two years on the project.
For ALONE’s first show outside the US, Paulson and Lewis wanted a city that would embrace and understand the experience. The team tested the waters here with a debut at the Melbourne Festival last October, and the reception prompted a full-scale staging.
“Bringing ALONE to Melbourne last October for the smaller introduction show was amazing,” Lewis says. “Because of how the show works, and the fact that we learn so much about each individual coming through, we as the creators and performers feel a similar sense of connection and personal relationship with each participant.
“Which is what it is all always about; the connection between humans.”
The ALONE experience runs in Melbourne from February 14 to 27. Locations will be disclosed to tickets purchasers closer to the date. Visit aloneexperience.com.au for more information.
Broadsheet is a proud media partner of ALONE. Enter here to win a double pass to opening night.
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