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Public Domain review – social-media musical swipes at Facebook

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Francesca Forristal and Jordan Paul Clarke’s show supplies sharp satire on influencer culture, but doesn’t dig into bigger issues

A computer cursor clicks on the instruction “Add as friend”, and our screens open up to a theatre set where two millennials sing: “We came here to find friends, and just like that we felt a little less alone.” Facebook’s digital motifs – thumbs up symbols and love hearts – float around them to give the impression they are inside the social media website.

This staged musical concert, streamed by Southwark Playhouse, takes Facebook’s mission to empower communities and democratise voices as its starting point, but traces a line from that utopian ideal to the Pandora’s box that has opened up around social media platforms in recent times, from the rise of self-promoting influencers to fake news, data misuse and Facebook’s privacy scandal.

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