Many friends of mine play online games such as World of Warcraft, in which they interact with other people, create elaborate characters, go on missions and experience intense emotions regarding victories and loses. However, I think most people would agree that this isn't theatre. So what is it about Best Before that pushes it beyond a mere video game? Perhaps it is the fact that we are in a theatre, experiencing it together and reacting to each others presence. Perhaps it is the people controlling the experience or the dramatic interludes. Or maybe this isn't theatre at all but a kind of performance art. I'm still not sure.
One of the things I admire about the Push Festival is it's commitment to putting on shows that blur the boundaries. Most of the shows I saw, including Best Before, were difficult to define. Theatre is a type of performance but not all performances are defined as theatre. A guy simply standing, showing slides and talking about his trip to China. Theatre? A guy projecting his family album in a bunny suit. Theatre? A collective video game. Theatre? In all these cases, I'm not sure what to conclude. However, I tend toward a more permissive view. If theatre is to challenge and engage it must arrest and this is rarely achieved in your tradition plot driven play.