Pure: at ease with E’s?

Blue Peter, The Sound 0! Music and even smoking not are among the inspirations for Pure, a new play about the dangers of taking ecstasy. Yet, apart from having a ciggy habit, TV researcher Rachel lavender claims that she and co-author Matt Ilewbury

have never taken drugs.


‘I don’t think it is necessary for me to have taken the drug in order to write about it,’ says Lavender. ‘By doing thorough research it is possible for me to write about the effects of ecstasy - although we do end the .. piece by saying there just isn’t enough .1 research into the effects at the

Severely disenchanted by the failure of the ‘Sorted’ posters (which appeared after the death of leah Betts), lavender and Newbury decided to just say no to scaremongering. Instead, they set out to write an entertaining and controversial play which would inform users and non- users about ecstasy.

‘We are definitely not trying to preach,’ says Lavender. ‘Kids naturally have a recalcitrant nature. Matt and I felt quite strongly about this subject, so we thought that if we could write a piece which gave out the facts, then we would be giving people the choice on what to do.’ (Thorn Dibdin)

Pure (Fringe) PAF Productions, Iiill Street Theatre ( Venue 41) 25-31 Aug, 6.05pm, £4 (£3).




An Irish suspected terrorist and a Jewish woman convicted of a crime of passion are flung together in an Israeli prison. From this premise. Tmu-na create a stark. riveting and intensely theatrical performance piece. Commitment is the central theme: in Sivan Hoiesh's and Nicole Rourke's startlingly physical performances. in the desperate bond of strength that grows between the women. in politics. and in us as audience members who are constantly dared rm! to be committed. Impressive staging gives the piece a formal beauty and a springboard to debate ideas of gender oppression and failed idealism. A show that walks on the razor’s edge between success and failure. and succeeds remarkably. (Grant Gordon)

I Dead Hours (Fringe) Tmu-na Holon Theatre Company. Theatre Workshop (Venue 20) 226 5425. until 3| Aug (not Suns) 6.30pm. £6 (£4).


However much complimentary Jack Daniels the cast ply the audience with. and however impressive the all-American energy and life is in this updating of (‘ammt'dia t/(‘H ' arte. it still feels like an end-of- term sixth-form revue. There are some lovely moments: the ridiculous musical interludes are superb. Jason Ades is an impish Harlequin. and there can‘t be a more tightly rehearsed play in town. But so much of the added material misfires. and for all the frenetic movement. there's an almost am-dram woodenness about it all.

Aiming for Monty Python.

it often just reaches the level of Margate pier panto. (Grant Gordon)

I The Servant Of Two Masters (Fringe) the give your dog a bone commedia troupe. Moray House Kabaret (Venue I68) 556 0102. until 3| Aug. 7.35pm. £5/£7.



Woman On The Moon: ‘Inttmate and absorbing’

‘Freud said that all women over the age of 40 are raving mad. At 75 I‘m almost twice that mad!‘ The woman on the moon played by Eva Pearce is thought to be crazy. but this emotive monologue about her tragic life and abuse as an Indian Jewess is told with more wisdom and humour than madness.

_ Unravelling her story from her marriage at the age of twelve. to the recent death of her despotic husband. Avi Nassa‘s script offers insight into an entire culture through this intimate and absorbing. if slightly drawn-out performance. (Tanya Stephan)

I Woman (In The Moon (Fringe) Whispering Eyes Theatre Company. C Venue (Venue I9) 225 5105. until 31 Aug.

Sm" - 8pm festival

All Of Me: the trampoline family



This is an astonishing example of physical theatre; one that blends acrobatics with a kind of psychotherapy. Two men and two women form a dysfunctional family. Working out their hostilities in action rather than words. they attract and repulse each other like agitated human magnets.

The dark stage is illuminated by angst and energy as they use each other as human trampolines. springboarding off knees. heads and shoulders. desperately wrapping themselves around each other for reassurance. or clambering out of the path of aggression.

C horeographed with breathless precision by Nigel Jatnieson. this lively Australian quartet is exhausting and uniquely entertaining. (Paul Smith) I All OI Me (Fringe) Legs On The Wall. Pleasance (Venue 33) 556 6550. until 3| Aug. 7.10pm. £8/£7.5() (£7/£6.50).



Irvine Welsh's notorious Trains/wrung. adapted for stage by Harry Gibson. charts the highs and lows of a bunch of Edinburgh

kids washed up in a twilight zone of drug addiction. violence. theft and despair. Told in the authentic rasp of the city's marginalised youth. the story conveys the brutal horrors of heroin addiction like a slap in the face but cuts it with a healthy dose ofdark wit. Gerard Butler makes a convincing Renton. teasing out the multiple and contradictory facets of the surprisingly likeable smack addict. The squat-like set and sculptural lighting evoke the desolation. though the action could do with tightening up. All in all. though. this (allegedly) final presentation of the long-running stage version is a deeply compelling if uncomfortable ride. (Claire Prentice) I Trainspotting (Fringe) Trainspotting. Assembly Rooms (Venue 3) 226 2428. until 3| Aug (not 27) 7pm. £9.50/£8.50 (£8.50/£7.5()).



Sean Cullen is a funny little fella. One third of Corky And The Juice Pigs. and creator of Dame Sybille. near-legendary darling of the Fringe. he strikes his friendly. affable. on-the-level pose with only a guitar and a small notebook for company.

Reading from his beaten. battered. bashed- about pages. and breaking unexpectedly into song about halfway through. he gives a true solo show. which. thanks to its cheeky irreverence. seems to appeal more to the middle-aged of the audience members. And

though by no means hilarious. the character who appears to make Cullen laugh just as much as the audience. provides. at least. an amusing start to your evening. (Danny Wallace)

I name Sybille Meets IIer Maker (Fringe) Gilded Balloon (Venue 38) 226 2|5l. until 3| Aug. 6. I5pm. £7 (£6).



This is a nightmarish first- night gig. It's all so obviously unrehearsed. perhaps because Stephens has just got off the plane from LA. Soundguy and performer are at each other's throats. lighting changes happen at random. and Stephens seems to have no idea what to put in his set. When we laugh at one gag. he simply re-tells it. He does have a fantastic singing voice and entertainingly improvises on the piano. but he‘s trying to present a showbizzy set on the David Letterman Show. not a stand-up routine to 50 people in Edinburgh. Obviously talented. he will doubtless improve. (Grant Gordon)

I James Stephens III (Fringe) Assembly Rooms (Venue 3) 226 2428. until 3| Aug. 7.30pm. £6 (£5).



The comedienne shuffles on and asks a mortified member of the three- strong audience thankfully not myself— to hold her colostomy bag. It’s downhill from here

Sitting astride a barstool sipping s'rong liquor. which sadly she does not offer round. Sue Vass presents us with a rambling monologue charting the institutionalised life of her disabled alter ego. Mavis. a dishcloth knitter.

The problem is that if

- you don't appreciate the

'hilarity‘ of this core fact then the whole weary yam unravels.

Sue Vass‘s dishcloths may be ubiquitous. but a riotous source of mirth is definitely not one of their uses. (Alan Crawford)

I Sue Vass: The Ubiquitous IIIincIoth (Fringe). Out Of The Blue (Venue I43) 556 5204.

until 3| Aug. 7.30pm. £3

Trainspotting: all aboard for a rough rlde (£2)

bead Hours: crime and commitment

6.45pm. £5.50 (£4.50).

The List 23 Aug-5 Sept I996 37