By now, the Arches Live! mini-festival has become something of a post-Edinburgh Festival institution, if such a term can be applied to so experimental a jamboree. This year, there’s as great a diversity as ever, and too much to mention in one short round-up, but those who saw Adrian Howells’ An Evening with Adrienne at this year’s Fringe will need little encouragement to attend 14 Stations of the Life and History of Adrian Howells. This performer works mainly biographically with comfy evenings of chat about his life, as well as asking about the lives of his audience members in the course of the show. There’s something endearing about his work, which at times gently but firmly challenges assumptions about gender, sexuality and emotional politics.
Deborah Pearson’s Your Ex Lover Is Dead also aims at an apparent intimacy in representing an awkward dinner between former lovers. Issues of love and loss also pervade Barry Henderson’s A Pleasant Kind of Loneliness, a piece that looks at the isolated figures on Edward Hopper’s landscapes, and spins off into an examination of isolation. Indeed, there’s a generally loved-up, or down feel to Naked Neighbour (Twitching Blind) which in part speaks of how people fall in love. Love among the luvvies seems to be this year’s theme. Go see.