Theatre

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Villa Design Group: The House of Adelaida Ivanovna

9 Aug 20143 stars

Postmodern European theatre/installation staged in a shopping mall, part of Edinburgh Art Festival

The vast top-floor warehouse space of Ocean Terminal's Logan's Run-style shopping mall is a gloriously incongruous venue for the Hamburg/London-based Villa Design Group to house its epic reimagining of Gogol's play, The Gamblers. While the array of…

MacBraveheart: The Other Scottish Play

7 Aug 20144 stars

A blend of Macbeth and Braveheart with a political satire edge at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

As the title suggests, this play brings together the stories of Macbeth and Braveheart in a comedy that blends historical drama with current political satire. After a drink of the scared swally (Buckfast) a witch convinces William Wallace, against…

Chatroom

8 Aug 20144 stars

Intense and dramatic production of Enda Walsh’s cyber-bullying tale at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Irish writer Enda Walsh’s name on the poster isn’t always cause for optimism; for every inspirational item like Once, there’s tiresome self-indulgence like Penelope. No Prophet Theatre have chosen to revive his 2005 play, a timely and direct…

God is in My Typewriter

8 Aug 20143 stars

Anguished bio drama based on Anne Sexton falls in to trap of cliched acting at the Edinburgh Fringe

It was almost inevitable that, in choosing to give over a theatre space to a series of monodramas, Hill Street Theatre would find itself programming at least a couple of bio plays about terribly troubled lives. God is in My Typewriter, in which…

How to Disappear Completely

7 Aug 20144 stars

Honest, intimate autobiographical play about assisted suicide, staged at the Edinburgh Fringe

Itai Erdal explains to the audience that when he was young, he wanted to be a documentary film maker but became a lighting designer. Using projected film clips and over seventy lighting cues this show utilises both his passion and his profession to…

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The Dirty Talk

10 Aug 20143 stars

Two men deal with their mutual dishonesty in this Edinburgh Festival Fringe dramedy

Mitch is trapped in his father's cabin in the woods with Lino, who has lured him there under false pretenses. That's about all you get in the way of exposition in The Dirty Talk's first twenty minutes, and while this raises the anxiety levels and gives…

The Illicit Thrill

8 Aug 20144 stars

Burlesque goes to the dark side with uncompromising eroticism at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Gypsy Charms is one of the original pioneers of the burlesque revival in Scotland: through her teaching, she inspired a generation of performers. The Illicit Thrill keeps her ahead of the pack, lending burlesque a darker, sleazier energy that is likely…

RIVERRUN

8 Aug 20144 stars

Spectacular Joycean monologue by Irish theatre-maker Olwen Fouéré, staged at the Edinburgh Fringe

Whatever one makes of RIVERRUN, Olwen Fouéré ’s adaptation of parts of James Joyce’s Finnegan’s Wake, one must applaud the attempt. Fouéré, one of Ireland’s leading theatre-makers, has brought to the theatre a text that some consider impossible to read…

Kraken

8 Aug 20144 stars

Creator of cult hit Squidboy returns with gripping mime performance to transfix the audience

Who needs actions when you’ve got words? Or in the case of Kraken, who needs words when you’ve got actions, specifically the transfixing mime of New Zealand’s Trygve Wakenshaw? Also the creator of cult hit Squidboy, and, like the mythical…

Zelda: The Last Flapper

8 Aug 20143 stars

Great acting hampered by conventional script at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Zelda Fitzgerald, the writer and wife of F. Scott Fitzgerald, lived a life which was far from the image of the carefree " flappers " of the Roaring Twenties. As we discover in William Luce's play, in which award-

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Lippy

7 Aug 20144 stars

Bush Moukarzel and Ben Kidd direct stylish, sensitive true story adap for Edinburgh Festival Fringe

In 2000, four women died in a house in Leixlip, near Dublin. An elderly aunt and her three nieces starved themselves to death in what appeared to be a suicide pact. Little is known about why they did it. There is simply not enough information to…

Working Title: The Orpheus Project

10 Aug 20142 stars

Nomanstime Automatics stage a reference-heavy sci-fi noir at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

This two-hander certainly wears its references on its sleeve. The Orpheus Project takes its cues from modernist dystopias, Kafka's The Trial and the classical story of frustrated love to depict the city of London as an authoritarian city state run by…

Anthem for a Doomed Youth

10 Aug 20143 stars

Poetry from the First World War performed by Guy Masterson

It is the very anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War and Guy Masterson has a cold. He takes to the stage, apologising for his pink socks and creaking voice, and explains that the aim of his one-man show is to bring us the poetry of the…

Animal Farm

10 Aug 20144 stars

Guy Masterson collaboration with Georgian theatre company brings new energy to Orwell classic

Olivier award winning director Guy Materson has collaborated with artistic director Keti Dolidze and Georgian-based Tumanishvili Film Actors’ Theatre for a sensational theatre adaptation of Orwell’s classic dystopian tale exploring the devolution of…

Arabian Nights

9 Aug 20144 stars

Friendly a piece of children's storytelling theatre exploring classic tales

Fresh-spun and thrilling, Story Pocket Theatre's take on the tales of the Arabian Nights is as fine and friendly a piece of storytelling theatre as you are likely to find at the Fringe this year. You don't get many of the 1001 nights in an hour, but…

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The Factory

9 Aug 20143 stars

Fun musical theatre piece with an edge of social consciousness, staged at the Edinburgh Fringe

Presented here as part of the NZ at Edinburgh showcase season, this fun musical theatre piece hits the right note both in terms of its light-hearted musical tone and its packaging of a slice of New Zealand's social history, which is doubtless largely…

Unfaithful

8 Aug 20144 stars

Sparkling new drama by Owen McCafferty about infidelity, staged at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

A plumber having a pint after work in a boutique hotel is approached by a bold young woman with red lips and a swishing ponytail. She is the same age as his daughter. Does he, she asks with the electric confidence of youth, want to fuck her? With that…

A Slight Ache

8 Aug 20144 stars

Twinges of Pinter in impeccably performed play exploring suburban paranoia

Nobody did suburban paranoia as well as Harold Pinter, and this is a fine example: on the longest day of the year, Edward and his wife Flora (comedy actors Thom Tuck and Catriona Knox, respectively) bicker. They initially seem well-matched; Edward is a…

Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind

8 Aug 20144 stars

Audacious project of 30 plays in one hour is superbly executed at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

American collective The Neo-Futurists could be the ultimate contradiction: high-minded slackers with rockets up their asses. An audacious project, where a cast perform thirty 'plays' in an hour, this has the vibe of a happening, where the…

Juvenalia

8 Aug 20143 stars

Ancient antagonist brought into 21st century by Simon Callow at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

When Simon Callow first performed Juvenal's Satires, he was a young man: returning to the words of the Roman poet as an older man, and part of the theatrical establishment, he shares a respectable status and seniority with the writer. Although he never…

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Sister

8 Aug 20144 stars

Empowering performance art exploring female sexual identity, staged at the Edinburgh Fringe

Sister is a bold autobiographical performance told by sisters Amy and Rosana Cade as they explore issues of female sexual identity, sexual expression and choice. The show is frank and revealing both emotionally and physically; the sisters start the show…

Blood Orange

8 Aug 20143 stars

Electric Theatre Workshop explore pressures of Instagram perfection and rise of the far right in UK

In this high energy performance Electric Theatre Workshop dramatise the fall out of a chemically fuelled night. The script is a unique blend of vulgar realism and almost Shakespearean allegory. With little dialogue, events are narrated by the young…

So What If I Dance?

8 Aug 20142 stars

Original show deconstructing stripping fails to develop characters or issues presented

Over the past few years, plays about lap-dancing have spread across the Fringe. Some of them warn about the dangers; others, like So What If I Dance? are more positive. Most of these pieces come under autobiographical theatre, adding an element of…

Woyzeck!

8 Aug 20142 stars

Time Zone Theatre's take on Büchner’s unfinished classic lacks precision

Discovered unfinished at the time of his death, Georg Büchner’s Woyzeck’s fragmentary beauty has become a touchstone for theatrical experimentation since its premiere in 1913. It is not unsurprising then that Time Zone Theatre would select it as the…

According To His Need

7 Aug 20142 stars

Bachelor infiltrates socialist party to get laid in this Edinburgh Festival Fringe production

Show me yours, I'll show you mine: relationships as transactions are not a new idea and sex often plays a crucial role when partners negotiate their needs. In According To His Need, hobby socialist Nick joins the party to finally score again. He meets…