Invisible Cities revolves around a conversation spanning several years between the despotic Kublai Khan and a young, shackled Marco Polo.
Khan’s lust for knowledge, power, love and belonging knows no bounds and he enslaves the naïve Polo to show him the great cities of his dominion and beyond.
Polo’s gift for describing vivid, glorious and, at times, terrifying cityscapes to the old dictator keeps him alive and secures the safety of his uncle and father.
Polo grows more powerful with each new conjuring of a more far-fetched and fanciful city while Khan grows more impatient to know everything and every place.
Love, loss, desire, longing, despair and greed are all explored in this exquisite production.
Supported by an international ensemble of brilliant and beautiful dancers, the cities spring to life through dance, mime, minimal props and the clever use of light and water.
In one scene, the stage is transformed into a Venetian canal, complete with gondola gliding along a watery thoroughfare.
The audience is in a celestial golden kingdom one minute, an underwater orgy the next.
“Be careful what you wish for” is the central premise of this cautionary tale.
Khan wishes to know perfection and be all-knowing, while Polo reminds him that this knowledge, while seductive, can destroy.
This ambitious, large-scale production is presented as theatre-in-the-round in a huge warehouse in Yeerongpilly, across the road from a brothel.
This unprepossessing venue belies the brilliance of Invisible Cities.
It must be seen to be believed.
Brisbane has come a long way from its days as an invisible city.
Once known as a cultural backwater, modern Brisbane now entertains its citizens with theatre that is bold, dramatic, intelligent and provocative.
Judging by the audience’s reaction to Invisible Cities, it shows just how far we’ve come.