REVIEW: Slava’s Snowshow, Mayflower Theatre, Southampton, until Saturday, October 5.

Presumably you either get it or you don’t. I didn’t. And nor did the bloke next to me as we left the building.

“What on earth was that?” he said. It’s anybody’s guess, and that’s presumably the point.

There’s a yellow clown; there is a set of other clowns of varying sizes each wearing versions of the same bizarre, wide hat; and that’s about as much as you can say for certain.

They meander through various scenarios, and then just when they seem to be fizzling out, they pull a sheet of cotton wool over the audience.

And then they stand there looking at each other, at which point you realise “Oh, this must be the interval.” Except that they keep going while you wander off. When you wander back, they are clambering over the seats before the show settles down once again to go nowhere in particular.

And then, once again, when it’s on the point of petering out, some kind of wind machine blasts billions of little bits of white paper at you - and this really is quite something to behold.

After that, the clowns chuck huge balls into the audiences which you instinctively reach for in an effort to bounce them elsewhere. Once you’ve had enough of that, you can go home after the strangest half an evening you’ll ever experience in a theatre - something between DIY entertainment, non-entertainment and sitting in a home for the bewildered.

At the end you might decide that it is a truly wondrous reconnection with the essential innocence, joy and playfulness of our existence. Or you might decide it was a complete pile of wombat droppings.

Either way, I am looking forward to Slava’s reworking one day of The Emperor’s New Clothes.

Phil Hewitt