THEATRE REVIEW ' * * * *
THE BIBLE: THE coMPLErE wono or con (Aenloch)
The Reduced Shakespeare Company returns to Edinburgh with an irreverent look at the Bible. It is a sott target and the gags tlow treely, both good and bad, new and very, very old.
This is no bad thing. Any duds are quickly torgotten as the momentum leaves them behind. With plenty of knockabout sight gags, audience participation and a couple of neat theatrical tricks thrown in, nobody is going to feel short-changed.
The political jokes lack bite, and some critics might like to see a couple of the trickier biblical issues tackled, but this is the place to be it you want to curl up (laughing) with a
Jump for Joy at the Good News
good book. (Stephen liaysmith)
The Bible: The Complete Word 01 God (Abridged) (Fringe) The Reduced Shakespeare Company, Assembly Rooms (Venue 3) 226 2428, until 31 Aug (not 28) 11.30 am, £8/2‘9 (£7/E‘8).
l *t* l
THE MAN AND THE MOUNTAIN
The Man And The Mountain: engaging storytelling
It only everyone’s uncle was like Chris Craig in The Man and the Mountain. Frantic at his typewriter as we enter his kitchen, he welcomes us, his nephews and nieces, tor the day. A day when his as yet unconceived story is due at the publishers by three o’clock. Genially enough, he makes us pancakes, and the story of the Flatlands emerges, a subtle warning against social and emotional flatness. There were more chuckles trom
. parents than children, a tow ot whom
tound some parts a bit slow. But it asks some interesting questions about the value of individuality. That, and the ingenious set, and Craig’s engaging storytelling makes this worth seeing. (Gabe Stewart)
The Man And The Mountain (Fringe) Hullaballoo Children’s Theatre, Famous Grouse llouse (Venue 34) 220 5606, until 31 Aug, 10.15am, £3. 50.
Three years in conception, Bollerhouse’s collaboration with Irvine Welsh, has resulted In theatre that sticks two fingers up to the proscenium arch. This acid tragedy is stuffed full of more tear and pity than any Greek classic.
Martin’s liIV; Tina's lost her kids; John’s a dog, and Micky ends up dead. What brought them here? The long list includes inadequacy, exploitation, anger, too much hope and not enough love, murder, proposed necrophilia and cannibalism. tinsurprisingiy perhaps, they dance to torget.
In this ionner ecclesiastical space, promenade works very well. The audience, at turns horritied, mesmerised or moist-eyed, is tentative at first, but soon gets stuck in there, parting like the Red Sea whenever an actor wades through. Wired up, pertormers scramble up and down scattolds, literally on the edge. Miraculously, the technical wizardry doesn’t compete against, but
Brain tlt to burst in Readstate
complements the cast’s tire. Music summons up menace. Stained glass reacts with strobe lighting.
All the cast astonish with their passion, but Tam llean Burn, all ribs and pounding veins, ls magnificent, dripping sweat and saliva. And atter, he interrupts all the cheering applause to encourage us all to be reviewers on the Fringe website, and tuck the critics. Aye, right on Tan. (Gabe Stewart)
Headstate (Fringe) Boilerhouse, Bate Graffiti (Venue 90) 557 8330, until 31
l *** l
, A WHEELIE BIH ATE MY SISTER!
It may have worked for Jordan and co. but Stella is having a tough time being new kid on the block. She's got no mates. is always picked last for games. and is slagged for wearing naffclothes and being into ultra-uncool UB40. But everything changes when she‘s transported. via wheelie bin. to the world of Woz. Taking the basic plot of The Wizard ()j'Oz. this show is a thoroughly 90s reworking. complete with Liam Gallagher gags. Home And Away and an environmentally friendly message. It takes a while to get going and could do with a bit more audience participation. but Gillin Lubrinitsky as Stella makes a convincing little girl lost. Addressing issues of self-esteetn and bullying it certainly makes for a more entertaining lesson than a lecture from the Head. (Claire Prentice) I A Wheelie Bin Ate My Sister (Fringe) Openwide Theatre Company. Gilded Balloon Theatre (Venue 38) 226 2l5l. until 26 Aug. I lam. £5.50 (£3.50).
l *** I
HULLABALOO Plagued by food poisoning. a faulty lighting desk and a miscreant mask. this children‘s version of The Tempest remains true to the original. while occasionally reducing the audience to hysterics. lntermingling Shakespean'an and contemporary language. director Bill Davies helps 8+ year-olds to ﬁnd their way into the play's poetry. without patronising them. Musical director Cheryl Payne is a gem as Ariel. grabbing her young audience‘s attention right from the start. This is no featherweight spirit. but a lumpy Dahl-ish bawd who delights in farting and nosepicking. Good set.
Aug, 12.3“”. 139.50 (£5).
mask and puppet work.
Wheelie Bin: 3 90s Wizard ot oz
but Hill/uhulrm's greatest strength lies in warm characterisations. and the actors' ability to engage with all their audience. Once rid of teething problems. this deserves to be a big hit. (Gabe Stewart) I Hullabaloo (Fringe) Backlash Theatre Company. Old St Paul‘s Church Hall (Venue 45) 556 0476. l0.35am. until 3| Aug (not Suns) £4.50 (£3.50).
The. Ti \ 't\hs (.“enps'tr \ «S‘EVIK‘? :»3§§sk.s Excellent debut tor Trial Run THEATRE REVIEW at * 1k
Compulsive mover Alice. played by Emma Weeks. admits ‘I thrive on the stress of upheaval.’
A wonderful opening scene sees Alice timing herself packing. which she compares to ‘emotional diarrhoea.‘ She then tells the story of her lesbian life. from her ﬁrst fantasies at school. through trauma and personal columns. to final happiness with Kate.
Though superbly acted and full of humour. Louise Say's first script deals too fleetingly with issues such as Alice‘s dishonourable discharge from the army. An exceHentdebut nonetheless. (Alan Crawford)
I Trial Hlln (Fringe) Shocking Pink Productions. Theatre
Workshop (Venue 20) 226 5425. until 24 Aug. l0.45am. £5 (£3); 26-3l Aug. 12.30pm. £6 (£4).
Sooans Nicht is the winter solstice. a time dominated by ancient legend and superstition. In a Scottish farmhouse passions run high as a mother tries to keep her dark secrets hidden on the tnost volatile night of the year. This powerful melodrama glides effortlessly between gritty kitchen sink realism and a magical. poetic mood to chilling effect. The convincing cast have gripped this piece by the throat and play each emotion at full throttle. The script may creak from time to time but the general effect is of intense. compelling storytelling that brings imagination and honesty to complex ideas. (Catriona Craig) I Sooans llicht (Fringe) Castlemilk People‘s Theatre. Theatre Workshop (Venue 20) 226 5425. until 24 Aug. 12.30pm. £5 (£3.50).
A genetically inherited disorder is like a Greek tragedy curse passed on through the generations. This play is a Theatre in Education project developed to educate teenagers about. specifically. Friedrich‘s Ataxia Disorder and about genetic ethical issues in general. The intricate moral maze is impressively dramatised. but the play is best when the didactistn stops and we see how one family copes with the disease. The writing and acting are good enough. the debate afterwards informative. and though it doesn‘t quite stand up as great theatre. as T.I.E (some scientific confusion aside) it is very good. (Grant Gordon)
I The Gift (Fringe) Y Touring. Theatre Workshop (Venue 20) 226 5425. until 3l Aug (not 25) llam. £2 (£I).
Review star ratings
*t‘k ** *
Below average You’ve been warned
20 The List 23 Aug-5 Sept I996