‘A deeply alarming message’: SEA SICK – Edinburgh Fringe

In Edinburgh Festival, Festivals, Opinion, Plays, Regional theatre, Reviews, Scotland by Tom BoltonLeave a Comment

CanadaHub at Summerhall, Edinburgh

Alana Mitchell is at pains to point out she is not a performer. She has been driven to stand in front of audience by the urgency of a message she believes is more important than anything. She has uncovered stunning evidence that carbon in the atmosphere is acidifying the world’s oceans, a process that could lead to the extinction of all life on earth. She tells, in an engaging lecture, the story of how she, as a journalist, came to be investigating this little known, devastating climate change phenomenon.

Mitchell’s message is deeply alarming although she does believe we have the means to save the oceans, if not necessarily the political will. It seems harsh to quibble from a theatrical point of view with such a heartfelt and important undertaking.

However, questions are left hanging, in particular about why she has chosen to take her message on stage. Not exactly a mass medium, it seems that other communication options would make more sense for a self-declared non-performer. Actually, Mitchell does a fine job which makes her protestations seem a litle disingenuous, but it is hard not to wish her very well indeed with the task she has taken on herself.

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Tom Bolton
Tom Bolton is an author and researcher, based in London. He comes from Stratford-upon-Avon, where Derek Jacobi in The Tempest got him hooked on theatre. He sat on the Olivier Awards judging panel, and started reviewing for Londonist in 2010. He is particularly keen on disinterred classics, new writing and physical theatre, and spends a week at the Edinburgh Festival every year looking for more. Tom blogs independently at tombolton.co.uk and tweets @teabolton.
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Tom Bolton on RssTom Bolton on Twitter
Tom Bolton
Tom Bolton is an author and researcher, based in London. He comes from Stratford-upon-Avon, where Derek Jacobi in The Tempest got him hooked on theatre. He sat on the Olivier Awards judging panel, and started reviewing for Londonist in 2010. He is particularly keen on disinterred classics, new writing and physical theatre, and spends a week at the Edinburgh Festival every year looking for more. Tom blogs independently at tombolton.co.uk and tweets @teabolton.

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