Hayley McGee’s monologue Age Is A Feeling at the Soho Theatre, narrating an unnamed person’s life, from age 25 through the years after the they die, hones in on key episodes that irrevocably define them and their future, as well as drawing attention to death’s inevitability. As sombre as this piece is, it also adeptly encapsulates moments of joy. As a whole, it’s deeply human and beautifully performed.
Inspired by her own experience of clothes hoarding, the monologue Breathless by Laura Horton at Pleasance Courtyard is a gentle story of accepting and managing mental health issues.
The Rest Of Our Lives at Summerhall, Edinburgh ends in a remarkable moment of mass dancing as the audience descends on the stage, suddenly finding themselves at full emotional stretch thanks to an unashamed expression of personality from these two delightful performers.
Nouveau Riche, creators of the hit show Queens of Sheba that confronts systemically ingrained misogynoir, now focuses on the experience of being a Black woman actor in Caste-ing. Using music, beatboxing and spoken word to expose the micro-aggressions and racism that shape their working lives, the show is a rallying cry for change within theatre and film.
Antigone, Interrupted is exceptional and thrilling dance and, like several productions at this year’s Fringe, reverts to Greek myth to provide stories for our trouble times, with remarkable results.
Linus Karp’s deconstruction of the relatively unpopular movie adaptation of Cats, How to Live a Jellicle Life: Life Lessons from the 2019 Hit Movie Musical CATS, is a one-person cabaret show which combines everything bad and partly good about the star-studded film based on the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical of the same name.
Sarah-Louise Young is brisk, charming and authoritative, engaging the audience in vocal warm-ups as they take their seats. Her confident stage demeanour sets the scene for one-woman show The Silent Treatment at Summerhall that becomes remarkably revealing and painfully honest.
Musical comedy Kathy & Stella Solve a Murder by Jon Brittain and Matthew Floyd Jones at Roundabout @ Summerhall is a hilarious caper that embraces the genre’s fans, life’s unexpected heroes and the quest to find yourself.
Sara Joyce’s production of The Last Return for Druid Theatre at the Traverse is carefully choreographed and absorbing. Sonya Kelly has re-imagined Ionesco for the post-colonial era, and leaves us feeling we’ve seen something we won’t forget in a hurry, even if its exact meaning is elusive.
Eoin McAndrew’s script for The Girl Who Was Very Good at Lying at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe is borderline cruel in that Rooney is required to deliver the frenzied prose in only an hour. But it is watertight. Hysterical in tone, speed, and funniness, and Fay Lomas’ direction ensures the writing is done justice. The Girl Who Was Very Good at Lying is slick, moving, and an absolute gem of the Fringe.
by Laura Kressly The disaffected son of a clergyman, Sir Paul Dukes, ran away to Russia to work as a musician. While there, the Russian Revolution started and British intelligence recruited him to work as a secret agent. He was to smuggle prominent people and useful materials across the border to Finland, and otherwise do […]
Hayley McGhee has created an absolute gem of a solo show in Age is a Feeling at Summerhall Anatomy Lecture Theatre, Edinburgh. A day after seeing it, some of the lines (and feelings evoked) are still zinging around my mind (and heart). In other hands the concept of this show might feel cliched and presumptuous but McGhee’s mesmerising presence on stage and terrifyingly insightful script are beautiful, compelling and moving from start to finish.
In transphobic discourse, trans people are feared and consequently monstered. In these bigots’ brains, they are positioned outside the gender binary and labelled ‘not normal’. Canadian trans nonbinary theatremaker SE Grummett (they/them) first satirises what is considered normal within traditional gender roles, then creates a simple folktale where trans people as superheroes. They uses puppetry, audience interaction and live feed video projection along with monologues to both hilarious and profound effect.
Rinkoo Barpaga has created a fascinating and unsettling show in Made in India/Britain. An honest and clear-eyed exploration of his own experiences and reactions to navigating life as a deaf person of Indian heritage in modern Britain, it did that rare and precious thing of opening my eyes to a world of which I knew very little.
Bad Teacher is a new production from Queen of Cups, a young female-led and London-based theatre company. This one-woman play follows young teacher Evie and her particularly bad day at school, from coming in with a hangover to a hectic parent evening.
Award-winning Canadian director Mona Zaidi is ready for the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2022, having staged Justin Hay’s critically acclaimed play My Own Private Shakespeare which continues its run at the Willow Studio, Greenside at Riddle’s Court until 27 August 2022.
Suffice to say, this is probably one of the strongest line-ups in the La Clique show over the last few years, and it is thoroughly enjoyable throughout.
Written and performed by Rachel E. Thorn, Lovefool makes nostalgia a fun treat for those who can take hints involving pop music lyrics and a magazine’s cringe sections. If that’s you, this show will tell you what you want, what you really really want.
Welcome to the Madhouse, a place of chaos and confusion, typical of student house-sharing. A group of six friends gives a bittersweet glimpse of early adulthood, a path as messy as the kitchen table around which they party, study, and share their stories.
Nuworks Theatre, from Australia, bring their lively and passionate musical (written, directed and designed by David Dunn, with choreography by Meg Dunn) about the fight for women’s suffrage to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and Suffragettes is an impressive addition to the work around this topic (see also, Sylvia, a musical WIP which ran at the Old Vic a few years ago).