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Top 5 shows about ageing at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2013

29 Jul 2013

Including comedy from Viv Gee, music from Webster & Bourgein and theatre from Paper Birds

Age Against the Machine Viv Gee’s seventh stand up show sees her continue her pursuit of coming to terms with being a self-proclaimed “middle-aged teenager”. Whether it’s constantly evolving technology, fuzzy felt or dealing with ageing itself, Viv is…

Theatre of Widdershins bring Rumpelstiltskin and the Wheel of Fortune to Fringe 2013

29 Jul 2013

Widdershins' Andy Lawrence appreciates 'strong sense of darkness that runs through' the fairytale

Stories told in childhood stay with us forever, and there can’t be many parents out there who don’t recall the weaselly wonder of little old Rumpelstiltskin. It’s a tale ripe for theatricality, and if ever there was man to do it, it’s Andy Lawrence. In…

The value of art in society is under fire in Banksy: The Room in the Elephant

29 Jul 2013

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2013 show is inspired by a true story

For their tale based on a real-life event, the team behind Banksy: The Room in the Elephant – director Emma Callander (of Theatre Uncut), writer Tom Wainwright and actor and former Eastenders star Gary Beadle – have lucked out with a story that provides…

Young Fringe stars Little Bulb explore new territory with Squally Showers

29 Jul 2013

'We’re exploring the world of dance theatre and dance logic' says artistic director Alex Scott

Between 2008’s Crocosmia and 2010’s Operation Greenfield, Little Bulb Theatre have won most of the major theatre awards at the Edinburgh Fringe. This year, they return with the third in their trilogy, Squally Showers. ‘The characters aren’t related at…

Gecko Theatre Company bring childhood memories to life in Missing

29 Jul 2013

The physical theatre show is being staged at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2013

For their last visit to the Fringe, Gecko reinvented Gogol’s The Overcoat as an expansive parable about how the quest for material comfort can become a deal with the devil. Missing has an original story – a woman, Lily, feels her soul being eaten away…

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Cadre examines the meaning of the fight for freedom

29 Jul 2013

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe production is by South African playwright and actor Omphile Molusi

With the world’s media camped outside Mandela’s hospital, it’s an important time to revisit the history of his nation’s civil rights movement. In his follow-up to 2008’s Fringe First-winning Itsoseng, playwright and actor Omphile Molusi presents an epic…

I’m With the Band tackles Scottish independence from a different angle

29 Jul 2013

Welshman Tim Price's Fringe performance uses inter-band tension as an independence analogy

It’s not the subtlest metaphor: when a Scottish guitarist leaves successful indie-rock band The Union, its remaining members – an Englishman, a Welshman and a Northern Irishman – question their alliance. But with the independence referendum just a year…

Kevin Tomlinson charts man's progress through life in Seven Ages

29 Jul 2013

The erstwhile comedy performance is returning as a drama to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2013

Although last year Kevin Tomlinson’s extended improvisation on Shakespeare’s seven ages of man speech was a success under the comedy label, its return is firmly in the theatre section. ‘I didn’t just want to be judged by whether I was being funny,…

Gruffalo geniuses Tall Stories deliver My Brother the Robot

29 Jul 2013

The mechanical family story will appear at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2013

Annoying as siblings can sometimes be, having an in-house playmate has definite advantages. Unable to procure one through the usual route, the little girl in Tall Stories’ new show obtains one from her father, an inventor who knows a thing or two…

Tortoise in a Nutshell returns with Feral, a play animating the Trumpton Riots

29 Jul 2013

The performance, which is part puppetry, part film, will be staged at the Edinburgh Fringe 2013

Even leaving aside the subject matter, there can be few more potentially stunning Fringe plays in the pipeline than Tortoise in a Nutshell’s Feral. A co-production with Cumbernauld Theatre after the previous success of Grit and The Last Miner, Feral is…

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Playwright David Harrower visits Glasgow the Dangerous in Ciara

29 Jul 2013

Blythe Duff takes the lead in Harrower's Traverse production for the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2013

The Traverse’s programme during the Fringe is predictably solid: the theatre’s continued support for Scotland’s top playwrights is reflected in a new work from David Harrower, Ciara. Harrower remains most famous for his incendiary Blackbird, a complex…

Playground politics take centre stage in kids' theatre production Hush

29 Jul 2013

The first work from Moon Mission Theatre Company will play at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2013

The first play from Moon Mission Theatre Company, Hush is a tale that all children can relate to. ‘The story is about playground politics,’ says Flemish writer and director Anne Stoffels. ‘It explores how a playground can be a great imaginative setting…

If These Spasms Could Speak is a touching account of everyday life as a disabled person

29 Jul 2013

The play, a big hit at the Arches in 2012, is coming to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2013

‘At its simplest, the show looks at how disabled people see their own bodies,’ says Robert Softley of If These Spasms Could Speak, a big hit at The Arches last year that returns for a full Fringe run as part of the Made in Scotland Showcase. ‘It does…

Irish company Big Telly gives Melmoth the Wanderer its theatrical debut at the Edinburgh Fringe 2013

29 Jul 2013

Charles Maturin's novel is a Gothic condemnation of the Catholic Church

Oscar Wilde’s uncle, Irish cleric and party animal Charles Maturin, wrote Melmoth the Wanderer in 1820. It’s strong stuff, a Gothic condemnation of the Catholic Church with a Faust-influenced hero who sells his soul to the devil and then decides he…

Florence Minder comes to terms with loss in Good Mourning! VOstBil

29 Jul 2013

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe comedy-drama examines the role of language in expression

Although the Institut Français has a year-round remit to champion the French language, it doubles as an intriguing Fringe venue. Florence Minder’s Good Mourning! VOstBil might be performed in English, but it connects to the grand European tradition of…

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TV star Natalie Casey talks about performing in 9 to 5: The Musical

19 Jul 2013

A stage version of the Dolly Parton-starring comedy is touring the UK

Toe-tapping transitions from the silver screen to the theatre stage have become common practice for those writing musicals in recent years, with several popular films being revisited and revitalised for a new audience. Cultish 80s romp 9 to 5 is the…

The best shows at the 2013 Edinburgh Festivals

16 Jul 2013

20 highlights from the 2013 festival programmes, covering Fringe, Books, International, Art and Jazz

We’ve scanned the thousands of shows, exhibitions and events across the festival in late July, August and early September, and highlight the ones that simply cannot be missed

Strong food theme at 2013 North Berwick festival Fringe by the Sea

16 Jul 2013

Chef Neil Forbes, Moroccan cuisine and Belhaven Brewery set for town's harbour

The ice-cream cones on the front cover of Fringe By The Sea’s programme are the first hint at this year’s strong food theme. Besides the always-tempting option of braving the gallus seagulls of East Lothian, going al fresco and taking fish and chips…

Nikki Grahame, Lloyd Daniels and Benedict Garret in British sex comedy Up4AMeet

16 Jul 2013

The stage comedy performance provides a cheeky insight into the magic of online hook-ups

Promising gratuitous nudity, a starring role for former Big Brother contestant Nikki Grahame and a cheeky insight into the magic of online hook-ups, Up4ameet probably won’t be featuring in future Edinburgh International programmes. That the plot…

Edinburgh Fringe shows explores stories of Anna Politkovskaya and Yulia Tymoshenko

15 Jul 2013

Ines Wurth and Badac Theatre present shows dealing with prominent women in Eastern Europe

Every year, Amnesty International gives an award to a play on the Fringe that presses the right artistic buttons and spreads the word about human rights. When the judges come to consider this year’s Freedom of Expression Award, two shows in particular…

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Grid Iron perform Leaving Planet Earth at 2013 Edinburgh Festival

15 Jul 2013

Scottish theatre company's new show 'merges Battlestar Galactica and George Monbiot'

‘It was the merging of Battlestar Galactica and George Monbiot,’ laughs director Catrin Evans about the inspiration behind Leaving Planet Earth. In 2010, Evans’ mother sent her a clipping of an article about consumerism by The Guardian’s environmental…

Taiwan Contemporary Legend Theatre stage Metamorphosis at 2013 Edinburgh International Festival

15 Jul 2013

Actor Wu Hsing-kuo tackles Kafka's text in technology-heavy production

Wu Hsing-kuo knows all about transformation. In the Edinburgh International Festival of 2011, he morphed himself into all the key characters of King Lear. In his idiosyncratic one-man interpretation of Shakespeare’s play, Wu tackled each part in turn…

Performance poet and playwright Kate Tempest bring Brand New Ancients to 2013 Edinburgh Fringe

15 Jul 2013

Brand New Ancients is ‘everyday epic’ which finds heroism in the ordinary people

Kate Tempest doesn’t like to stay in her comfort zone. At only 26, she has already found success as a rapper, performance poet and playwright, gaining acclaim for her politically infused, impassioned writing coupled with a likeable, unpretentious stage…

Theatre show Big Daddy vs Giant Haystacks explores shift in power in UK society

15 Jul 2013

Wrestling-themed show at 2013 Edinburgh Fringe on north/south power shift between 1976 and 1988

When British professional wrestling legend Mick McManus passed away in May at the age of 93, it was the end of an era that this cauliflower-eared villain helped to define. Two other icons of the original sports entertainment no longer with us are…

Whatever Gets You Through the Night set for 2013 Edinburgh Festival Fringe

15 Jul 2013

Award-winning theatre show from Cora Bissett features some of Scotland's most distinctive artists

What’s on your mind between midnight and 4am? Sleeping? Soul searching? Eating? Night walking? This award-winning show from artistic powerhouse The Arches asked the question and got back a batch of different answers from 20 writers, musicians and…