Siren

To be surprised by a show at the Fringe is a rare and wonderful thing. Siren takes us in one direction then knocks us off our feet, making sure we are never sure of where the story is headed next. Funny, dark and touching in equal measure, David Elms’ writing and his and Freddie Tapner’s music manage to grab us and pull us in tight, squeezing us in their grasp right until the very end.

Ridiculous, surreal, yet completely believable. This Siren will be luring many people to its shores.

The setup is clear: sirens sing to sailors and lure them to their death. The mythology is taken and very much run with in this show. Elms’ script is dangerously good. It’s a joy to see a female character be allowed to be strong, sexy and funny all at the same time. Rosa Robson plays with this character and the script like it’s free form jazz, going in and out of song, keeping us on our toes. We are never sure which direction we are headed. Nicholas Masters plays the other characters with a confidence that is enviable. The interaction between the two actors is a delight to watch. They are comfortable with each other, and seem to be allowing each other to play.

Thomas Martin directs with a keen eye for detail. The smallest moments receive a laugh, whether that's the choice of footwear for the male character or Robinson’s wide eyed hysteria.

Elms and Tapner worked together on Mister Swallow and Siren has a similar cohesion between music and words; poetry smoothly transitions to naturalism in a moment. The music seems to flow directly from the script. Elms has taken a completely surreal situation and made it seemingly normal. We invest in the characters and what happens to them through the course of the show.

Ridiculous, surreal, yet completely believable. This Siren will be luring many people to its shores. 

Reviews by Emily Jane Kerr

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Performances

Location

The Blurb

‘No man is an island? Good for them.’ A siren. A ship. A song. The debut play from award-winning comedian David Elms (as seen in Mr Swallow, TV's Borderline), Siren takes an offbeat, bittersweet look at being desired and being heard. 'Beautiful, funny, clever and utterly engaging' **** (Scotsman). 'Offers something that feels entirely new' (Guardian). Musical Comedian of The Year 2014. Directed by Thomas Martin (Ross & Rachel, If We Got Some More Cocaine I Could Show You How I Love You) and featuring original music composed by Elms and arranged by Freddie Tapner (Mr Swallow, Ricky Whittington).

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