The Bastard Queen

The Bastard Queen

My appreciation for the acting in The Bastard Queen was matched by my strong distaste for the actual play. 

Pre-View:

Pre-View:

Though not a play in the strictest sense, this showcase of extracts from the Playwriting MA at Edinburgh University offers a compelling insight into the program, via the portfoli… 

Domestic Labour: A Study in Love

Domestic Labour: A Study in Love

A domestic drama in a literal sense, 30 Bird’s abstract piece circles themes of cultural identity, sex, politics… and who does the washing up. 

Reduced Shakespeare Company in The Complete History of Comedy (abridged)

Reduced Shakespeare Company in The Complete History of Comedy (abridged)

The title of Reduced Shakespeare’s show is accurate to the point of pedantry. 

A Split Decision

A Split Decision

This topical drama casts Scotland and England in the roles of bickering husband and wife, mediated by a third party functioning as both marriage therapist and collective child of B… 

Show Off

Show Off

If a cabaret act is consciously, deliberately devoid of talent, does that excuse it from criticism? It seems reductive to point out that the mono-browed, pink-wigged Figs in Wigs… 

Something Beginning With

Something Beginning With

Jake and Ollie have gone underground. 

Breaker

Breaker

This tale of small island intrigue and memory, penned by Icelandic author Salka Gudmundsdottir, translated and brought to the stage by Scottish director Graeme Maley, transcends th… 

Pippin

Pippin

A version of the musical first performed in the 1970s, Pippin has a certain campy charm. 

Titus

Titus

I have never resented a show so much for the hour I lost in enduring it. 

Our Glass House

Our Glass House

Wester Hailes, a suburb of Edinburgh, is about as much of a potential tourist destination as the moon. 

Punk Rock

Punk Rock

I shouldn’t blame the cast of this version excessively for how little I enjoyed Punk Rock: I should instead take it up with Simon Stephens. 

Ménage à Trois

Ménage à Trois

Put simply, Claire Cunningham has with Ménage à Trois created a unique way of movement using her crutches. 

Paradise

Paradise

The lives of a group of strangers clash on the London Underground. 

DNA

DNA

The premise is mildly interesting: a group of feral, amoral teenagers kill a classmate and attempt to cover up the murder through ever more elaborate schemes of deception. 

Our Fathers

Our Fathers

The relationship between child and father is creatively a well-trodden path, so kudos to Babakas for not only finding original angles to explore in their fact-meets-fabrication pro… 

Where the White Stops

Where the White Stops

ANTLER have created the story of a girl called Crab (Jasmine Woodcock-Stewart) who lives in a snowy wilderness with her brother Narwhal (Daniel Ainsworth), who one day leave the sa… 

From Where I'm Standing

From Where I'm Standing

A bomb explodes in the British Embassy in Mumbai. 

A Genteel Tipple Through Gin in Literature

A Genteel Tipple Through Gin in Literature

Arriving at Hendrick’s Carnival of Knowledge early was a good decision, as there is plenty to observe even before the talk starts. 

A View from the Bridge

A View from the Bridge

My ear for accents is pretty poor; I think that Dick Van Dyke does a passable Cockney. 

Chalk Farm

Chalk Farm

Chalk Farm is the first high-profile piece of theatre to consider the consequences of the riots and looting that ignited main cities in Britain last summer. 

The Bunker Trilogy: Morgana

The Bunker Trilogy: Morgana

The Fringe is an incredible month for theatre but boy does it have some soulless venues. 

Hag

Hag

Baba Yaga is a character featuring in folk tales from most European cultural traditions; a grotesque old woman who eats children then retains their skulls for macabre light fitting… 

The Canterbury Tales

The Canterbury Tales

Geoffrey Chaucer is a tricky writer to read, let alone convey in a coherent dramatic narrative. 

The Seer

The Seer

The brief yet astonishing creative career of the ‘enfant terrible’ of French poetry, Arthur Rimbaud, is explored by Penn Dixie Productions’ frankly eye-opening production The… 

The Babysitter

The Babysitter

The Babysitter, an original InDepth play written by Breman Rajkumar, is a very modern living-room drama, delicately mapping the peaks and troughs of drama in a dysfunctional yet si… 

The Winter's Tale

The Winter's Tale

Tread The Boards theatre company’s retelling of Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale begins in World War II-era Britain, featuring Leontes as a military general with a stiff upper… 

My City Saturday

My City Saturday

At Gryphon Venues, instead of your humdrum paper ticket stub, you get a glittery poker chip. 

Storytellers' Club

Storytellers' Club

Storyteller’s Club was the friendliest stand-up night I’ve ever been to. 

A Modern Town

A Modern Town

A Modern Town is a very 21st century fable of Newton Bassett, a tourist hotspot which has fallen on hard times, and its efforts to draw in visitors; a sink or swim initiative which… 

4.48 Psychosis

4.48 Psychosis

For anyone following British theatre of the last two decades, Sarah Kane’s is a legacy which is impossible to avoid. 

The Thinking Drinkers Guide to Alcohol

The Thinking Drinkers Guide to Alcohol

I am still amused at the bravery (idiocy?) which compelled the thinking drinking duo to pull me out of the crowd to participate in their show, Broadway Baby lanyard clearly visible… 

Criminals, Lunatics, Women and Idiots

Criminals, Lunatics, Women and Idiots

You have to hand it to this motley crew of Ottawa teenagers - feminism is a tough topic to broach in youth theatre. 

Translunar Paradise

Translunar Paradise

Translunar Paradise is a phenomenally creative show. 

Secret Opera Society

Secret Opera Society

The Secret Opera Society event at restaurant Centotre brings together music and cuisine in a stunning fusion of Italian culture with a strong Scottish sensibility and humour. 

Titanic Sinks Titswilly

Titanic Sinks Titswilly

The ludicrously titled Titanic Sinks Titswilly had such an embarrassing moniker I felt compelled to whisper the name under my breath at the press office, trailing off at the end to… 

How Much is Your Iron?

How Much is Your Iron?

Reviewing a play by Bertholt Brecht presents some immediate difficulties as, according to the author’s intentions, whether one enjoys the play means zilch, as he believed that th… 

That Old Noir Magic - A Film Noir Jazz Journey Into Night, in Story and Song

That Old Noir Magic - A Film Noir Jazz Journey Into Night, in Story and Song

As an avid fan of old noir movies, crooked cops, and general hard-boiled quick witted cynicism, needless to say I was looking forward to this show. 

Jimmie MacGregor - A Gathering of Songs, Stories and Famous Folk

Jimmie MacGregor - A Gathering of Songs, Stories and Famous Folk

This perma-tanned, white-toothed Glaswegian folk powerhouse produced an evening of (very few) songs, details of his exploits with various celebrities and other anecdotes from his l… 

Panning for Gold

Panning for Gold

In my experience of bluegrass, there is usually a lot of plaid and a smattering of Stetson hats among both band and audience. 

Captain Ferguson's School for Balloon Warfare

Captain Ferguson's School for Balloon Warfare

Despite the unwieldy mouthful of a title, Captain Ferguson’s School For Balloon Warfare turned out to a be a surprisingly simple, sweet tale of an affable American officer trying… 

Female Gothic

Female Gothic

Female Gothic is a treat of a show for anyone as macabre-minded as myself; but then again I compulsively watch plane crash documentaries. 

Cubicle Four

Cubicle Four

Cubicle Four is comprised of a trio of duologues set in the eponymous hospital cubicle. 

Angels

Angels

Angels had quite an esoteric plot from the word go. 

Belt Up Theatre's Outland

Belt Up Theatre's Outland

Something consistently excellent about Belt Up’s productions is their dedication to preserving the illusion. 

Dirty Blood

Dirty Blood

Sam and Emma’s Mum has cancer. 

NOLA

NOLA

An acronym of New Orleans, Louisiana, NOLA is a surprising theatre documentary following the devastating after effects of the BP oil spill crisis. 

Chapel Street

Chapel Street

Blisteringly funny, audacious, and moving, watching Scrawl’s Chapel Street (written by Luke Barnes) is akin to taking a shot of vodka, followed by a bottle to the face. 

Continuous Growth

Continuous Growth

Continuous Growth is a saga spanning the lifetime of Scottish everyman Andy: from falling in love in Year 4; through university; an unnecessary shotgun wedding; economic boom and b… 

Still Life (or Brief Encounter)

Still Life (or Brief Encounter)

Dead Posh’s production immediately struck on a winning note before the play had even begun, endearing themselves to hungry reviewers by providing Tunnocks teacakes and plastic cu… 

1,000 Suns

1,000 Suns

If you like your musicals with an unhealthy dose of American cheese (from a can, naturally) set in a post-apocalyptic wilderness, then 1,000 Suns will set your world on fire. 

Stripped Back Blues Guitar Duo

Stripped Back Blues Guitar Duo

Early afternoon jazz runs the risk of coinciding with an early afternoon sugar crash; it’s possible that mellow blues might prove more soporific than scintillating. 

Faust/us

Faust/us

The ‘multimedia’ production of Faust/us, for a 40 minute show, has an oddly leisurely opening. 

What's He Building in There?

What's He Building in There?

The absurd and often hilarious What’s He Building In There? from STaG productions opens with a sawdust-spattered man lovingly caressing a chair, and only gets weirder after that. 

China Red

China Red

A long-winded titled, but undeniably talented, the Beijing Students Golden Sail Art Troupe brought a splash of colour to a typically grey Edinburgh morning. 

A Taste o' Scotland

A Taste o' Scotland

I have never been to a show which opened with the distribution of Nairns Oatcakes and sachets of Quaker Oats porridge.