Press


The Public Reviews / August 13, 2014

Britannia Waves The Rules

The men in Carl Jackson’s world offer little in the way of role models: the drug-dealing Appletons, his uninspiring uncle Charles, and his father who has retreated into a childlike world since the death of his Carl’s mother. The bright lights of Blackpool are of little solace, masking the poverty and despair of the locals,

British Theatre Guide / August 11, 2014

Britannia Waves The Rules

Dan Parr gives an epic performance as Carl Jackson in this 2011 winner of a Judges Award in the Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting about the harshness and repercussions of a man’s life in the army today, as Britain is involved in a War on Terror. With due respect to his fellow actors, Britannia Waves the

The Guardian / August 11, 2014

KlangHaus

Don’t worry that KlangHaus appears under the music section of the fringe programme. This live gig by noise-art collaborators the Neutrinos and Sal Pittman is pure theatre. Or at least live art. “That was weird,” somebody announced on the way out. It is – weirdly wonderful. What makes the show so interesting is the way

Exeunt Magazine / August 11, 2014

Lungs

Lungs is not explicitly a ‘climate change play.’ Duncan Macmillan has no interest in shoving capital-‘I’-issues down his audience’s throat – but what he does do is show them two people thinking about the rest of their lives in a way that most people from this generation will surely recognise. What pervades Lungs is the

The List / August 11, 2014

Out Of Water

It’s 6.30am. The Shipping Forecast plays through our headphones as we walk across Portobello beach to a group of mysterious figures waving and pointing out into the water, gently lit by the pinkish dawn sun. Music and narration in our ears merge with the wash of waves and cries of gulls; later we’re gently taken

Broadway Baby / August 11, 2014

Britannia Waves The Rules

Britannia Waves the Rules, presented by Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre, is a brilliant play. The pop-up ‘state of the art amphitheatre’ of Roundabout @ Summerhall is the perfect setting for this dynamic, physical piece. The highest commendation must be awarded to the actors. Dan Parr, playing Carl Jackson, maintains an astonishing energy throughout his eighty

Fest / August 11, 2014

Standby For Tape Back-Up

…Sutherland, on the other hand, spouts words half at random in Standby for Tape Back-up (5 stars). He’s found a VHS tape he and his grandfather used as a sort of video scrapbook. For years, they’d record titbits of television onto it, one clip over another, and the result is a layered miscellany of moving

The Mumble / August 11, 2014

Sister

Lesson learned for this show; always consult the blurb before attending. Expecting a piece of scripted theatre and perhaps a disappointingly morose look at sex work and sexuality from this performance, I was rather astounded at what turned out to be a fearless, boundary pushing piece of live performance art. Not for the faint hearted

The List / August 11, 2014

KlangHaus

KlangHaus, the House of Sound, smells of antiseptic, is dimly lit, and echoes with the sounds of dark lounge music and clattering snare drums. Part gig, part promenade sound installation, KlangHaus is presented by The Neutrinos, ‘a female fronted alt-rock band’, with help from visual artist Sal Pittman. It’s by turns disorientating and soothing, a

Post Script / August 11, 2014

Every Brilliant Thing

Duncan Macmillan’s Every Brilliant Thing, brightly lit and performed in the round, takes the form of an intimate group discussion. Fine performer and comedian, Jonny Donahoe facilitates both the story and his crowd, warmly giving each audience member their part to play in the unravelling of the uncomplicated plot. With cards to read, props to

Three Weeks / August 11, 2014

Out Of Water

Silent figures stare out to shore, arranged in a row behind a length of rope strewn like a tidal mark in the sand. With a series of sunrise and sunset performances at Portobello Beach, this piece of performance art is married to its surroundings, as tales of chasing the retreating tide (and instructions for rescuing

Broadway Baby / August 11, 2014

The Flood

The Flood provides a haunting, tragic insight into one of the most devastating events in modern history. The Great War has just broken out, separating a man and a woman, soldier and nurse; we follow a year in their lives as they cling onto hope. The sole light of their lives are the letters they

Broadway Baby / August 11, 2014

Show 6

Show 6 is Secret Theatre’s latest production of Mark Ravenhill’s new script. It follows the life of a boy, the son of rich parents, who accidentally discovers that he is adopted,and that his natural parents were leftist activists fighting for the liberation of the workers. He forms a group with two friends who also discover

Broadway Baby / August 11, 2014

Nothing

If your experience of Fringe plays has become stale, Nothing is likely to change your mind. I’m not being facetious: this is an absolutely captivating piece of theatre. The fact that Barrel Organ Theatre is largely made up of recent graduates makes its professionalism even more impressive. The show’s novel arrangement is extremely daring. Chairs

Fest / August 11, 2014

Duck, Death And The Tulip

A duck meets Death, they drink tea, swim in a pond, climb a tree. The seasons change. The duck dies. Death lays a tulip by her body. Duck, Death and the Tulip. That’s all: no more. It seems slight, almost still; and, in spite of the dialogue, this play has a wordless, dream-like quality. The

The Stage / August 11, 2014

The Flood

A First World War officer leads his men into battle, symbolically throwing bits of raw meat at a wall. A nurse gathers them up and performs triage, discarding the ‘dead’ and returning the others as fit for duty. This scene, repeated a dozen times in the course of the play, is a powerful metaphor for

The Guardian / August 11, 2014

"Audience Participation Can Be Fun"

A rough rule I’ve drummed up about theatre-going is that if the performers are having conspicuously more fun than the audience, the transaction has gone wrong. We’re paying to be here! And when theatre begins to seem like an intrusion into actors’ enjoyment of their own nerve and charm, it’s all too much like walking

The List / August 11, 2014

Our Teacher Is a Troll

There’s some very clever wordplay in Dennis Kelly’s book, Our Teacher is a Troll (as you might expect from the writer of Matilda the Musical) – so it takes some equally clever staging to flip it from page to stage. Happily, this co-production from Paines Plough and Half Moon theatre companies has that in spades.

The List / August 11, 2014

Maria Addolorata

It seems shocking when laid bare on paper, but on the stage it’s been true for millennia: pain can be funny. Hilarious. Some of the time. And it’s that last quantifier that makes the difference between Chiara Taviani and Carlo Massari’s sparky, clever and often bonkers dance show, and the simpler realms of comic clowning.

Broadway Baby / August 11, 2014

The Eradication Of Schizophrenia In Western Lapland

The Eradication of Schizophrenia in Western Lapland, by theatre company Ridiculusmus, is about the creation of an experience. Despite the title, this is not a simple narrative about the Finnish managing to all but eliminate the condition known as ‘schizophrenia’ through a process of ‘open dialogue’. Ridiculusmus are aiming for something much more interesting and