Review: Casus: You & I

★★★
theatre review (edinburgh) | Read in About 2 minutes
Published 08 Aug 2018
31938 large
Casus

Domestic life is no circus – except in Casus’s case. You & I finds the Australian troupe’s co-founders Jesse Scott and Lachlan McAuley moping around their flat on a rainy day; a couple killing time by doing tricks. Chin ups on the trapeze. Hula hoops in a lull. But nothing exposes a relationship’s cracks like being cooped up for a long, lazy day.

Cohabiting has made this couple too comfortable. A tender hand-to-hand opener has them folding around one another, taking each other’s weight, with hardly a thought. There’s a playful lethargy to them. Silences are contented, time alone is OK. McAuley picks up his wood-carving work, leaving his lover to make his own entertainment.

They’re missing a spark, and every attempt to jumpstart something sexual—McAuley’s sultry hand-balancing act, Scott’s leathers-and-hotpants wardrobe raid—quickly collapses back into innocent fun. No matter how literally they try to rekindle the magic, it always seems to do a disappearing act.

Domesticity slowly takes a darker turn. There’s a flicker on bondage—and the frustrations beneath—as Scott swings his smaller partner round with a hand loop, and their tango-like trapeze turn has a fervent muscular velocity. Mostly, the subject matter means this is short on thrills and it’s a long while before a six-chair balancing act—a symbol of a healthy relationship—induces a shot of something spectacular.

There’s a lovely chemistry between the real-life couple, but You & I feels short on context and content. Casus, hot property on the Fringe, may have got comfortable.