Created as a set of three stories, all linked by the idea of true stories where people play the victim to gain fame, notoriety and more, Louris van de Geer’s Triumph is a dark and fascinating look into a post 9/11 world and those who use tragedy to bring meaning into their lives, no matter how wrong it may be.
Triumph is inspired by a number of stories, notably that of Tania Head who pretended to have escaped the Twin Towers while losing her husband Part One), an exploration into Munchausen by Proxy (Part Two), and a story based on suicide pacts in Japan (Part Three). Of these three stories, it is Part Three that is the most fascinating and foreboding and by the end of the show, one is left wondering how much sympathy they are willing to feel for such characters.
A wonderful aspect of the show is Romanie Harper’s set design and Amelia Lever-Davidson’s lighting design. Each story is set up, so each scene is played further back into the space of fortyfivedownstairs. What starts as a very basic set in Part One with lots of bright lights, ends up as a dark and evocative space by Part Three, creating a stark, yet fascinating sight.
With all the actors playing multiple roles, they all get a chance to shine within the various stories. Syd Brisbane is a highlight in Part Three, while Anouk Gleeson-Head’s performance in Part Two brings alive a maturity not expected in a fifteen-year-old. This is a thought-provoking show that reminds the audience that we are all looking to connect with others and the lengths we will go to for said connections.