Edinburgh University’s Shakespeare Company present the chilling tale of Hekabe, a reimagined translation of Euripides’ original Greek tragedy. Wielding strong performances and bold creative choices, Hekabe is a powerful production, bringing a touch of theatricality and drama to this year’s Fringe.

A striking and impactful exploration of feminine strength and brutality

The story depicts Hekabe, the former queen of the recently fallen city of Troy, as she grieves over the sacrifice of her daughter and death of her son. With Greeks as their captors, Hekabe and the remaining women of Troy seek revenge before they are forced into a life of slavery. Together, director Max Lister and AD Devki Panchmatia combed an open translation of the original text and sculpted the script themselves. The result is a skilfully constructed narrative that grips the audience with dynamic momentum and pace.

As the play commences, the audience are plunged into the thick of the plot: the terrors of the attacks on Troy have left Hekabe and her chorus of Trojan women in disarray, which is further intensified as she learns of the fate of her daughter. The actors tackled these heightened scenes of distress impressively, and the text was spoken beautifully with great care and consideration. This is true for the rest of the performance; however, the play itself poses the actors with the challenging task of finding nuance and character development in a plot where there is ever-increasing tragedy. The majority of the cast overcome this with proficiency, but there are places where this could be refined further.

There are several picturesque moments in the play where the movement, costume and lighting come together to create beautiful imagery on stage. This is particularly prominent in the sections of dance that are woven into the production where the Chorus vividly utilise their bodies to enhance the storytelling as they monologue and reflect on the action we have witnessed. The Victorian-inspired clothing is evocative of the play’s passionate Romanticism, evidenced in the highly emotional plot lines, and this works extremely well in presenting Hekabe as a lamenting figure. Despite this, there is discord between the Chorus’ costumes and the rest of the cast that is slightly distracting for the viewer. Their jester inspired outfits don’t necessarily fit with the minimalistic staging and set, and it would create a more united performance were they also in Victorian garb.

The stand-out moment of the play is the scene where Hekabe meets with Polymester and subsequently has him blinded. The direction is spot-on, and the actors create a scene that is suitably disturbing and powerful. This, in combination with the impressive monologue work, is what elevates Hekabe above other amateur productions. With some revisions, Hekabe would reach new heights; nevertheless, the performance is a striking and impactful exploration of feminine strength and brutality.

Visit Show Website

Reviews by Isabella Thompson

Orange Tree Theatre

Suite in Three Keys

Young Vic

The Homecoming

Park Theatre


Underbelly, Bristo Square

Shoot From The Hip

PBH's Free Fringe @ Banshee Labyrinth

The Town Cryer


Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now



The Blurb

The Edinburgh University Shakespeare Company presents two new shows at Bedlam Theatre – Euripides' Hekabe and Harold Pinter's The Dumb Waiter – as part of this years Shakesperimental showcase. Previous shows include The Macbeth Inquiry and Much Ado About Sicily. For more information on our show schedule check out our linktree:

Most Popular See More

The Phantom of the Opera

From £30.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Play That Goes Wrong

From £27.00

More Info

Find Tickets


From £30.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Tina - The Tina Turner Musical

From £12.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Back to the Future - The Musical

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Mamma Mia!

From £15.00

More Info

Find Tickets