Battersea Arts Centre, London
Writer Thomas Melle delivers a lecture via his android counterpart in an unsettling show that poses big questions

It’s the fingers that get to me. Bitten and weathered, the skin worn down in places, they are incredibly detailed and utterly convincing. I’m looking up close at an animatronic, or robot, of the German writer Thomas Melle. The show proper – a lecture delivered by this robot – has finished and the audience has been invited on stage to study our automated actor. It feels like viewing time at the zoo and I can’t shake the feeling that this robot is somehow going to wake up, reach out and grab me.

The animatronic, created by Chiscreatures Filmeffects GmbH, is an enthralling production in itself. It looks and sounds like a slightly flattened but fascinating human being. His features seem smudged, his face animated yet oddly deflated.

At Battersea Arts Centre, London, until 26 February.

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