The Magic Cave of Salamanca

This was a hugely disappointing hour of theatre. Overall, it was less a comedy of errors than it was merely an error in comedy. The production is described on the Fringe website as being “an exciting, lively and colourful production”. I must regretfully inform you that this is not the case.

This wasn’t funny so much as it was annoying.

The play is an English language adaptation of “La cueva de Salamanca” by Miguel de Cervantes, the author of Don Quixote, and it is put on by Off World Productions. If you decide to go see this play, I recommend that you bring with you a set of low expectations. The play is not particularly funny. The costumes are low budget and simply don’t make sense in terms of where the production is set. For example, there’s a man dressed in the costume of a Roman soldier, when the play is set in Spain. Really, only the costumes of the prostitutes are accurate. Some of the actors are just wearing street clothes with striped ponchos. The effect was underwhelming.

La cueva de Salamanca is supposed to be filled with light hearted interludes. The Magic Cave of Salamanca is a production consisting solely of these interludes. They are meant to be diversionary theatre -- “truly Fringe theatre”, the play describes itself -- but these are not comic gems. This night’s audience was rarely laughing at the jokes performed up on stage. Several people left over the course of the play.

The actors often made winking jokes to the audience, breaking the fourth wall, joking about how bad the play was. This wasn’t funny so much as it was annoying. One got the feeling that the actors were delighting in wasting the audience’s time. This wasn’t helped by the fact that the acting on the whole was just very poor. There were even moments when some of the actors appeared visibly bored.

Overall, this is a very amateur production and I cannot recommend that anyone go see it. 

Reviews by chhewitt95

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The Blurb

Off World Productions bring an exciting, lively and colourful production based on the Interludes of Miguel Cervantes, including The Magic Cave of Salamanca. Written as diversionary pieces to be performed between the main acts of a play (truly fringe theatre), Cervantes’ interludes are comic gems in their own right. As a genre, 'interludes' were generally disliked by the authorities because of their subversive potential, and those by Cervantes are no exception. For this reason, the Interludes were not performed in Cervantes' lifetime. Thus we are truly privileged to bring this production to the Fringe.