The Traverse’s Breakfast Plays series is an intriguing prospect: four plays on the same theme by their Associate Artists, presented as script-in-hand rehearsed readings at 9am ea…
Drolls, Brice Stratford tells us in the show’s scholarly introduction, were originally performed by half-drunk actors in covert locations on raucous evenings during the Puritan I…
Each of the short – but far from woeful – tales in this half-hour collection (from Bristol University and National Youth Theatre) have concepts that could be summed up in one l…
La Pire Espèce have been rummaging in the cupboards: in Ubu on the Table coffee pots, cutlery, a glass jug and drawers full of unassuming objects populate the cast in an energetic…
A lot has happened to Boris Johnson since Boris: World King’s runaway success at last year’s Fringe.
A Tale of Two Cities: Blood for Blood is neither the best of times, nor the worst of times, but over a ninety-minute running time it is a something of an odd construction.
In 1923, Marlene Dietrich made the transition from stage to cinema through a bit part in German silent comedy The Little Napoleon.
With the feel of an interactive workshop rather than a theatrical ‘show’, The Castle Builder is a lo-fi exploration of outsider art that alternates between informal lecture and…
Here is what happens in A String Section: five women cut the legs off the chairs on which they are sitting.
Guided by the contours and movements of squash and the confining size and layout of a squash court, Squish Squared is a unique and searching dance sequence that invites some fascin…
“The thing I was going to show you – well there’s a few things to show you – but I want to tell you something else first,” says Robin Ince some time into this intellectua…
How do we choose what we believe? Do we believe what we see with our eyes? Or do we believe what others find believable? What happens when these two things contradict one another? …
In this marvellous production from UCLU Runaground, the creatures from Lewis Carroll’s classic poem become metaphors for the inner demons a young boy must fight as he learns to c…
Fraxi Queen of the Forest is a pageant for children about ash dieback.
This charming double bill from Puppets Being Theatre uses poise and precision to bring to life ingenious paper creations.
The Gomaar Trilogy has stylish puppetry and heartfelt sincerity – but its confident aesthetic fails to enliven a tired story of a male artist trying to accommodate his creative i…
Kurage Theatre’s innovative theatre show is a song, dance and drama spectacular.
Amiable hosts Dingo (Joshan Chana) and Dog (Thomas Fraser) present surreal sketches and storytelling in this enjoyable and inventive show that will sometimes be lost on younger aud…
Sarah Moore Fitzgerald’s much-loved Young Adult novel Back to Blackbrick is adapted in a technically ambitious production from Patch of Blue.
We all know the story of Jack and the Beanstalk – or at least, think we do.
Edinburgh’s City of the Dead tour company guide fringe audiences along their graveyard route.
Twelfth night is a time of chaos, mess and topsy-turvy.
‘Look, I’m really sorry for this but we’ve got you here under false pretences,’ says Polly Toynbee at the start of her talk with David Walker.
In his hugely popular free show Think Big, Yianni sets out his ambition to sell-out the biggest venue at the Fringe, have Michael ‘HackIntyre’ open for him and to enter the stage ‘…
At the start of this show former Labour minister Chris Mullin claims that his memoirs chart ‘the entire rise and fall of New Labour from John Smith’s death in 1994 to Gordon Brown …
‘We’re from Trinity College Cambridge’, says Harriet Cartledge, introducing herself, three other comedians (John Howe, Vishal Patil and Ken Cheng) and their stuffed Magpie.
There is no dragon in The Dragon and George.
The second production of Godspell to grace the stages of the American High School Theatre Festival this Fringe - from St Luke’s School in Connecticut - is a skilfully directed spec…
Gbolahan Obisesan’s adaptation of Stephen Kelman’s novel Pigeon English has a lot of big names behind it: a popular novel and school classroom-reader; an acclaimed playwright; and …
Richard Wiseman’s Psychobabble feels like an assembly.
‘There’s a time and a place for that’, says Bridget Christie of serious political talk about feminism, ‘and eleven in the morning in a comedy show is not it’.
Domestic Science is a complex but perfectly balanced equation.
The Red Tree might be the most stylistically challenging piece of children’s theatre at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe.
The Golden Cowpat is a show grown on fertile pasture: Tucked In Productions’s Robin Hemmings and Anna Wheatley are accomplished performers, with a show as dramatically skilled as…
Every day in Edinburgh, a group of children and adults disappear into a haunted layer within South Bridge, enveloped in the crevasses of the city.
There are few things quite as lively, or amusing, as the imaginations of children.
Ever wondered what radio DJs chat about when they’re off-air? No, me neither - but it turns out the topic provides a wealth of material for James Cook’s one-man show about the tria…
Commercially, Austentatious is perhaps one of the easiest sells on the Free Fringe: a popular and intensely loved literary brand – Austen – combined with the most crowd-pleasin…
For the most part, Inspector Norse is a traditional detective farce: plenty of awful puns, stereotyped characters and of nods to the Nordic crime dramas - most obviously The Killin…
On paper The Comedy Reserve is a great idea: find four up-and-coming comics and sort them out with a fully paid up Edinburgh show under a prestigious banner, along with all the pub…
I Believe in Unicorns immediately invites us into its world.
Howard Read, the creator of the six-year old stand-up comedian and CBBC sensation Little Howard, leads a double life.
‘I got a lot of money from the electronics company Pioneer to put on a massive show!’ shouts Claudia O’Doherty, as the word ‘Pioneer’ rises from screens both behind and in front of…
On entering his small room at Pleasance for his first full-hour stand-up set Phil Wang promises us two things: that this set will get rather blue around the middle and that it will…
Have you ever a heard a room containing hundreds of children fall completely pin-drop silent? And if so, did that silence result from the listing of statistical, historical facts? …
Before I walk into the theatre it is quarter to six in the afternoon.
Performed in a specially made box inspired by the darkened booths of Victorian peep shows, Peep presents one of three short plays about sex and eroticism, depending on the time of …
The Life Doctor’s vital signs are all there: lights, music, movement and a very talented cast.
The Black Country Cider Lions’ compere Rob Kemp reminds us near the start of the gig that the room we are in is bespoke.
On paper The Magician’s Daughter could be one of the best shows of this year’s Fringe: a sequel to The Tempest, written by legendary children’s author Michael Rosen, includin…
A Victorian insane asylum.
For a band who create a sound as complete and consistent as The Burns Unit, the Scottish-come-Canadian collective look rather disparate.
Lewis Carroll’s ‘The Jabberwocky’ is to my mind one of the best works of literature to get children playing with language and at tempting their young imaginations.
Halátnost, the Russian word that literally translates as ‘dressing gown-ness’, has finally found its English, or more accurately Canadian, equivalent.
David ‘Perrier Award winning’ O’Doherty has grown a beard especially for his role as the intrepid – read: inept - explorer Rory Sheridan.
A man in the front row at Bec Hill’s show accuses her of being the worst comedian he’s ever seen.
Josie Long, arguably the highest profile comic on this year’s Free Fringe, and newcomer Sam Schäfer are an odd pairing.
Any sketch show that opens with the entire plot of Oliver Twist, in song, in three minutes is going to be good.
It should be no surprise that I am not the only unaccompanied adult at Little Howard’s Big Show.
Pun Run is a simple idea: a load of comics and other acts (including a sketch group, musical numbers and the Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre) deliver short, condensed sets of…
Chekhov said that if you put a gun in your scene it has to go off.
There are few performers humble, subtle and versatile enough to not only survive the avalanche of churnalistic pulp – that is to say, newspaper articles ripped from press release…
‘I was going to have a cucumber down my pants’ says compere Marc Smethurst, removing a cucumber from his pants, ‘but there’s a reviewer in tonight.
If I were to imagine a perfect evening’s entertainment, I’d like to think I’d come up with something not dissimilar to The Horne Section.
Nicholas Parsons’ Happy Hour is like a dusty old set of furniture in a stately home.
Susan Murray’s Photo Booth has a promising concept: comedy spun around her collection of passport photos – her own, her friends’, her family’s and those of complete strangers tha…
If there’s one near-forgotten art form due for a revival – along with storytelling and morris dancing – it’s surely ventriloquism.
In Madame Blavatsky’s ‘The Ensouled Violin’ Giuseppe Tartini’s demonic fiddle-playing is the result of a pact with the devil.
A play with this many Zs in its title should not be this good.
Milk is a graduate with a degree in advertising.
Dennis Kelly’s Debris is a masterpiece.
The stage of the Fringe one-man-show can be a high, vulnerable, and exposed parapet and never more so when the performer – in this case writer and co-creator Anthony Johnston –…
The Spooky Men’s Chorale are perhaps the world’s least famous international superstars.
King Creosote’s iron-clad strengths are his songwriting - whimsical and understated - and his voice - fragile and melodic.
The room is the size of your average school drama studio.
A Conversation with Carmel is a dialogue of artistic fusion with a lot to say, and far too many ways of saying it.
In Shakespeare’s Hamlet the players are driven to Elsinore by a company of child actors who have commandeered the urban stages.
Mad About the Boy, the new play from Gbolahan Obisesan, could not have come along at a better time.
The improv group Racing Minds want to tell you a story.
There aren’t many taboos left in comedy.
Were I a paying customer in the audience of The Madness of King Lear, I would have walked out when Lear - Leofric Kingford-Smith – began his imitation of Rammstein using Shakespe…
Jay Foreman’s show is a nostalgia trip for the young.
The Music Box, a new play by Cambridge University’s Emma Stirling is not only bad, but bad for theatre.
Just over the half the audience at Peacock and Gamble’s Emergency Broadcast seem to love this show.
To say that Flynch, Looking is about a seaside holiday will tell you nothing.
This production of Patrick Marber’s The Magicians shows huge amounts of effort and creativity on the part of its young cast from the sixth form of Taunton School, and is never wi…
Dave Gorman has formed a double act - with a projection screen.
From the moment the host of The Comedy Manifesto Kate Smurthwaite gives the audience the power to award points via heckling and gestures towards the Mussolini quote that the restau…
I don’t feel entirely comfortable reviewing An Instinct For Kindness.
Nick Cope is the children’s singer-songwriter who brings acoustic, folky indie rock to the under-fives.
Will Pickvance returns to the Fringe this year with his whimsical Anatomy of the Piano (for Beginners), an anatomical lecture about the piano.
Us/Them, a family dance show about terrorism, has been one of the surprise hits of this year’s Edinburgh Fringe.
The Many Doors of Frank Feelbad is a brave and engaging work about how children and families process and communicate grief.
The Adventure of Puppets charts the voyage of two explorers as they venture into the unknown.
Philip Pullman’s The Ruby in the Smoke sees the author’s Victorian mystery novel come to the stage for the first time.
I Got Superpowers for my Birthday by Katie Douglas is an action-packed fantasy adventure about the pains of growing up and learning you can shoot fire from your fingertips.
Into the Water is a fantastical folk-dance adventure set in a magical wasteland.
This year's Fringe - both in the children's and adults' sections of the programme - is full of innovative and exciting puppet shows.
Richard O'Brien is the author of several plays and four books of poetry.
Dickens Abridged, a fast-paced musical romp through Charles Dickens's life and works, has been entertaining audiences in Edinburgh and beyond for the last eight years.
L'École Internationale de Théâtre Jacques Lecoq in Paris is one of the world's most influential theatre schools.
The Falcon’s Malteser is the story of private detective Tim Diamond and his younger brother Nick becoming embroiled in a malteser-related mystery.
In their companion piece to 2013’s Fringe First Award-winning Dark Vanilla Jungle, writer Philip Ridley and director David Mercatali tell the story of Donny, a boy who has commit...
Pipeline Theatre’s Spillikin is the moving story of an Alzheimer’s sufferer who is kept company by a robot made and programmed by her robotics-obsessed husband.
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