Review: And The Horse You Rode In On **

At West Yorkshire Playhouse

The people behind Told By An Idiot are a bunch of very smart theatre makers. In this production, they are perhaps a little too smart – so much so that their story gets lost in a blaze of interesting and dynamic ideas.

An internationally performing company set up in 1993, Told By an Idiot is a company that revels in the playful nature of theatre, the most obvious comparison to make to a company Yorkshire audiences are familiar with is Kneehigh.

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They share with the Cornwall company a sense of fun and a dynamic approach to both making theatre and presenting it to an audience. Here Told By An Idiot explore acts of extremism with a series of semi-connected stories of violence and terrorism that end up a confusing tangle that ultimately fail to either hang together or be enlightening.

The Horse You Rode in On opens with the silhouette of a figure behind a curtain, it looks suspiciously like Alfred Hitchcock.

The curtain comes down to reveal a man in a fat suit who tells a joke in a comedy Italian accent – the punchline is the title of the show.

The image is intriguing, the joke telling animated and very funny – but these fleeting moments of pure entertainment fit uneasily with the rest of the narrative.

The Horse You Rode In On is at times a lot of fun, but ultimately the show is confusing and sadly unmemorable.