Who needs that double espresso shot when shows like Meghan Tyler’s Crocodile Fever exist?
As the fringe continues to grow, so does the input from Edinburgh-based companies. This year there are an unprecedented 93 different productions in the theatre section of the Fringe programme alone.
Bursting with emotion and tuneful energy, the return to the Traverse of What Girls Are Made Of is a thing of wonder.
In The Dark Carnival Vanishing Point and The Citizens (in association with Dundee Rep Ensemble) have crafted a strangely fascinating but oddly frustrating entertainment – theatre-cum-gig-cum-cabaret that impresses in fits and starts.
Trailing clouds of glory from the 2018 Fringe, David Ireland’s Ulster American has returned to the Traverse with a bang. If it is not quite as good as some have said, it is still impressive – and certainly is impressively nasty.
There is much to admire about the staging of Mouthpiece at the Traverse, and even more about how it is acted. In the end, however, the play tantalises rather than delivers.
After a Fringe full of blockbuster productions, the Traverse’s autumn season kicks of with Nests, a two-hander that looks at social inequality and considers what we can learn from crows.
There are moments in Gut – presented by the Traverse in association with the National Theatre of Scotland – where it is difficult to breathe, such is the power of Frances Poet’s psychological thriller.
Margaret Saves Scotland, the latest offering in the A Play, A Pie and A Pint season, marks the return of Val McDermid to the stage. Anyone expecting a taut and bloody crime thriller, however, should be warned that this is a low-key piece, wistful and almost wilfully slight.
Edinburgh’s Lung Ha Theatre Company has created a strong and emphatically direct production of Chekhov’s Three Sisters in a new version by Adrian Osmond at the Traverse and on a short tour.
How to Act, the National Theatre of Scotland’s acclaimed production, is intriguingly named. There are shades of meaning behind that phrase, dealing with the expectations of society as well as the actor’s craft – coupled with a hint of know-it-all prescription.
Behind all this bold, sensual exploration of the seediest side of life, The Last Bordello becomes nothing less than an affirmation of the need – the absolute need – for people to have the freedom and resources to construct and tell moral fables in the time of war.
Matches are resolutely old-school and capable of being taken for granted, but are just as capable of flaring into life as they always were. Which is pretty much the case with Firebrand’s The Match Box.
What happens when a comedian runs a comedy club in one of the most violently repressed areas of the world? Showtime from the Frontline sounds like it should be a recipe for disaster, yet Mark Thomas’ latest production proves to be one of the wittiest and most heartfelt shows to tour to the Traverse.
Manipulate Festival is back and its performance side got off to a smashing start with two hugely inventive and darkly comic shows which both use toys as puppets: Song of the Goat and Plastic Heroes.
Shona Reppe’s puppet version of Cinderella at the Traverse Theatre until Christmas Eve is a thing of airy, subtle wonder. The familiar fairy story is told with grace, space and imagination through a combination of elegant puppetry and a kitchen counter with hidden depths.
Tabula Rasa at the Traverse is a collaboration between Scottish Ensemble and Vanishing Point that contains moments of heartfelt beauty but never coheres.
Our Fathers, at the Traverse to Saturday and then on tour, has a great deal of talent behind it. The end result is amusing and entertaining but ultimately somewhat too frothy.
Imaginative staging and superb acting give Man To Man at the Traverse a fascination that cannot prevent it from running out of steam slightly before the end.
After five days away, we are back for another week of theatregoing, along with 20 panels, workshops, surgeries and meets. May I recommend living in Portobello during the Festival? Swimming pool, walks along the beach, 20 minutes from town and quiet. Restorative and a creative community.