Written and directed by Andy Thompson. A Virtual Stage production. At an undisclosed location on Saturday, October 13. Continues until October 31
Going to see The Zombie Syndrome is a lot like going on a scavenger hunt—in which the occasional flesh-eating monster pops up. Other than that, there’s not a lot that I can tell you about it, having been sworn to secrecy and all.
But I can reveal that, when you buy your tickets, you leave your phone number and, the day before the show, you get a call telling you where to meet. The world is about to be ravaged by a zombie plague and you’re one of a team of scientists that has to stop it. Using smartphones—and basic smarts—you follow a series of clues that takes you on a surprising trek. (Don’t worry if you don’t have a smartphone; somebody else will.)
Kids over 12 are welcome and this would be a good show to take them to. Even though there were only adults in my group, running around the city with a small gang—the company can accommodate up to 13 people per show—made for some kidlike fun.
We all got jumpy—especially when surrounded by greenery. And it was cool how a change in my conceptual framework—being on a zombie hunt—altered my view of my environment: people using cellphones and taking public transportation looked especially zombielike, but the whole city took on a stylized, cinematic feel.
I don’t want to oversell the experience. There are longueurs—too many of them—as you move from place to place. It gets dull. But there were also a couple of times when I was so into it and so determined to protect the innocent that I might have derailed the performance if firm hands hadn’t stopped me.
Great makeup, thanks to lead designer Elizabeth McLeod, and solid work from all of the actors, especially Deva Nitins.
The Zombie Syndrome doesn’t consistently deliver, but it's kind of a trip and it's original.