Inspired by the producer’s experience with the sleep disorder narcolepsy, this high-energy show for adults is performed by an all-South Australian cast.

As Somnia 2.022 follows the vivid dreams and hallucinations of a protagonist portrayed by Rebecca Eva, audience members witness evocations of lust, horror and serenity. The narrative is an artistic exploration of narcolepsy symptoms including life-like dreams, night terrors and sleep paralysis.

The story’s narrator, Cashmere Eunice Hawksworth, proves more than a scandalous storyteller, displaying powerful vocals as she belts out “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)”. Tying herself in ropes, aerial performer Jayde Ormsby wows the audience, while another artist provokes gasps of horror and awe as they lie on a bed of nails.

Stunning lighting transforms the stage into a world shrouded in mist where things go bump in the night. The audience is easily transported between dreams and nightmares, with the atmosphere created mainly through simple changes in colour and music tempo that have a dramatic effect.

Visually stunning, risqué costumes glitter beneath the stage lights, each outfit designed to suit a particular character. We see the glittering elegance of an acrobat as she spins overhead in a crescent moon, before “Miss Moisty” appears as a sleep paralysis demon, startling the audience with the clang of her steel boots and creating literal sparks with her sensationally smutty demonstration.

The audience on this night was enthralled throughout the performance, with energetic cheering from the start. They applauded the sophisticated aerial acts, and couldn’t stop laughing and hollering ecstatically during the raunchy routines.

For an adults-only night of raw talent, exquisite costuming and divine naughtiness, Somnia 2.022 is definitely worth losing a bit of sleep over. With a little more polish and fewer opening-night nerves, it could become a Fringe-goers’ favourite.

Somnia 2.022 is playing in The Garden of Unearthly Delights until March 20. It is recommended for ages 18+.

Read more 2022 Adelaide Fringe stories and reviews here.

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