THE TEST – White Bear Theatre

In London theatre, Opinion, Plays, Reviews by Ian FosterLeave a Comment

White Bear Theatre, London – until 30 September 2017

“How do you define consciousness?” … The¬†world of artificial intelligence may feel like the realm of sci-fi but in reality is closer than we think, the next frontier in the progression of scientific knowledge. And Ian Dixon Potter‘s new play The Test shows the human race right at the point of breaching it, as ambitious scientist Dora and eager hacker Josh combine forces to harness the global computing power of the web in order to create ‘Mother’, the first truly conscious AI. What could possibly go wrong…?!

It is a formidable concept to explore in an hour of fringe theatre and to set up this world of advanced science and technology, Dixon Potter is caught between two stools, particularly in the opening scenes. Either characters rattle off complex ideas which threaten to fly over our heads, or they dumb down too much – the dictionary definition of the Turing Test is a case in point, or lines like ‘I need you to hijack the internet