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Monthly Archives: August 2018

From the Mississippi Delta, theSpace @ Venue45 – Review

Pros: The opportunity to see, as a part of the Fringe Festival, productions that come from different cultural and geographical backgrounds. Cons: The frantic delivery, which spoils the dramatic intensity of the play. Endesha Ida Mae Holland was born in 1944 in Greenwood, on the Mississippi Delta. She never knew her father, whilst her mother was a well-respected midwife called ‘Ain’t Baby’ by everyone in town. Nobody knew her real name. Raped at the age of eleven, Holland was later ...

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Dear Lucy…, theSpace @ Niddry St (Upper Theatre) – Review

Pros: The importance of keeping the memory alive on the centenary of the end of WWI. Cons: This is a work in progress, which could benefit from the contribution of a dramaturg. When Winifred Lucy Hall died in 1978, her two daughters found a shoebox hidden in her wardrobe, which was full of letters she received from the front during the First World War. She was only 19 when the war ended, and, in the final months of the conflict ...

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Stick By Me, Dancebase, Edinburgh Fringe. Review

Pros: Lovely gentle comedy Cons: Very much a children’s show – possibly overly simplistic for accompanying adults. Friendship and treasuring the little things are the themes of this charming silent comedy for children ages 3-6. Andy Manley is a warm and clownish figure, asleep on his desk as the audience take their seats. Silliness ensues when he wakes and finds his chair taped to his bottom. Manley says he thought it would be fun to make a show featuring sticky ...

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Stiffs, The Space on North Bridge (Perth Theatre) – Review

Pros: It’s fun and makes time go fast. Cons: The storyline can be enriched with more comedic material. Two lads wake up in an unfamiliar room lit in violet, dressed only with an hospital gown and covered up to their faces with a white sheet. One of them (Mark Olszewski) sneezes, as the room is visibly chilly. When he gets up, he notices a paper tag tied around his big toe, which reads “Vince Parker”. ‘Am I a birthday present?’ ...

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Di & Viv & Rose (In an Hour) by Amelia Bullmore, C venues, C cubed (main space) – Review

Pros: The acting is very intense. Cons: The plot and the characters are too stereotypical. Handmade Theatre‘s abridged production of Di & Viv & Rose is structured like a situation comedy. The story follows the lives of three young girls, who move in together to go to university and, even with the odd skirmish, unconditionally support each other when life throws at them the most horrible things. Despite the recurring dramas, the play is cheerful, with a warm atmosphere and, ...

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Shift, Circus Hub on the Meadows, Review

Pros: Playful and inventive acrobatics from award winning circus company Cons: Transitions between set pieces were sometimes meandering, and spoken text got lost in the large tent space. Award-winning circus company Barely Methodical Troupe’s latest show has a cool, other-worldly feel about it. Four performers, dressed in blue, manipulate what looks like a long tension-band (also blue), as the soundtrack of drips and static reinforces the dreamy, unstable atmosphere. The tension-band was fascinating to watch – catching acrobats like spiders ...

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Around The World In 80 Days @ Union Theatre – Review

Pros: Soaring harmonies, immersive set design, and some truly terrific choreography throughout Cons: Several questionable directorial decisions plague the production Based on the novel by Jules Verne, Phil Willmott’s adaptation brings a musical theatre version of the Victorian classic to Union Theatre – sewn together by the talent of a young and aspiring cast. This reworking, which sees the addition of a variety of song and dance numbers to keep things interesting, stays true to the original in other respects, ...

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Bag for Life, Greenside @ Infirmary Street (Olive Studio) – Review

Pros: The topic is weighty. Cons: The show didn’t make me feel any wiser. Suicide is a particularly important issue in Britain, where it is the leading cause of death for men under 45. That’s why it has become an increasingly recurrent topic in fringe theatre, where it is covered from many different angles. In this new piece, written and directed by Eve Walton, the subject is developed in the form of a dark comedy, with a quite unexpected final twist. ...

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The Spider Glass, TheSpace Triplex, Edinburgh Festival Fringe – Review

Pros: A topical issue – men’s mental health and the influence of toxic masculinity – that invites further discussion and suits a one-man play dynamic. Cons: The first 20 minutes feel less tight and less thematic; some sub-plotting could be cut. James is a single man in his mid-thirties, sorting his childhood possessions in the attic of the family home, prompted by his mum’s fresh start with irritating new man Roger. Writer and performer Craig Malpass brings all these characters ...

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Portraits in Motion: Volker Gerling, Summerhall, Edinburgh – Review

Pros: Accessible storytelling by a fascinating creative. Cons: The simple format can often feel more like a lecture, so might not appeal to everyone. This is a show about the moments when we’re caught off guard: the photos taken when we drop our poses and show our real selves, baggage and all. Volker Gerling, a trained filmmaker, began making flipbooks in 1998 as an experiment. Soon he was touring cafes and bars in Berlin, showing flipbooks from a hawker’s tray ...

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Holler Box