Starving artists aim for 6.2 on the Richter Scale

THEATRE PREVIEW Earthquake Weather

Godfrey Hamilton's Road Movie reinvented its eponymous genre and swept all before it at the Fringe of 1995. The one-person play, performed by Hamilton’s partner Mark Pinkosh, amounted to an intense, lyrical, multi- voiced monologue, carrying off an ostensibly implausible analogy between America's losses in the Vietnam war and those resulting from its more recent AIDS epidemic. Those who saw the play weren't surprised to see Pinkosh leave Edinburgh with The Stage award for acting excellence. Pinkosh and Hamilton’s company, Starving Artists, return to the Fringe this

year with Hamilton’s new play, Earthquake Weather. Director John Tiffany .

sees the piece as ’moving even further toward a play structure', eschewing the monologue technique in favour of a three-handed play. For all that, the narrative still leaves plenty of scope for Hamilton's linguistic originality to paint its pictures.

There is a superficial resemblance to Sunset Boulevard in the play's initial premise, whereby an ageing expatriate Scottish filmstar, Maggie Stevenson (Anne Louise Ross) lives a life of cosy decrepitude in Hollywood, before the arrival of film producer Angus Montevideo (Pinkosh). This disrupts her relationship with her only companion, the Gardener. Monet Moon (Katherine Howden), who moonlights as a tarot card reader for public access television. The result of this interaction gives rise to our title, which the director explains is the stillness which seems to occur just before the natural catastrophe which has periodically ruined California lifestyles. (Steve Cramer)

I Earthquake Weather (Fringe) Starving Artists, Traverse Theatre (Venue 75) 228 7404, until 30 Aug, times vary, £8 (£5).



The sold-out signs outside last year’s Stormin’ promised that future shows by Love Theatre Company would be popular in Edinburgh, and that the appeal of playwright Martin Green's work lay in more than a dry dissection of queer issues. This year, they’ve moved further towards the personal and enough from the political With Monsters, which takes as its theme the topic of a pregnant man, but, unlike Hollywood treatments of the same subject, takes it seriously. ’When you decide not to take the piss out of it, it turns into a metaphor for people’s insecurities,’ says Green, That doesn’t mean that there aren’t plenty of laughs, however, especnally when the central character, Graham, turns for guidance to a series of imaginary stereotypical women. 'lt’s impossible to get a pregnant man onstage Without people laughing.’ Green adds, ’But it’s that quality of laughter where you catch yourself and wonder why.’ (Alastair Mabbott)

I Monsters (Fringe) Love Theatre Company, Gilded Balloon (Venue 38) 226 275 7, until 30 Aug (not 78) 2.30pm, £6.50 (£5.50).

Monsters: male pregnancy leads to a identity crisis for Graham



Just when you thought it was safe to get back in a plane comes Stacked, with the unnerving subject matter of an air traffic controller on the edge of a breakdown. It’s a chilling, partly comic piece, which begins with our hero being investigated, presumably after some awful disaster. From there, we're led through the preceding events and on to a final twist. Writer Mike Snelgrove researched at West Drayton Centre, which services Heathrow, and at least two air traffic controllers have attended prewews. ’They said they

both for a Welsh national theatre and Welsh independence and welcomes the just-published devolution white paper with open arms. ’These plays are a farewell to present day Toryism,’ he says. ’They've all been thrown out of Wales, and this is a validictory to extreme right-wing, ignorant, chauvinistic English Toryism.’ Nice one, Taffy. (Neil Cooper)

I The Man In The Welsh Lunatic Asylum/The Man In The English Asylum (Fringe) Synaesthesia/Io/o Goch Theatre Company, Cafe Royal Theatre (Venue 47) 556 2549, 1 7—30 Aug (alternating nights) 7.30pm, f6 (f4),

really enjoyed it,’ says company founder David Edwards, who plays an RAF officer who is himself rather disturbed, believing that there are aliens in the air-space, 'but you never know when they tell you face to face. They did seem pleased With the reasonable authenticity of the jargon.’ He warns: ’lf anyone’s flown up to Edinburgh, they may not fly back.’ (Alastair Mabbott)

I Stacked (Fringe) Backstage Theatre Company, Roman Eagle Lodge (Venue 27) 225 7226, 77—22 Aug (not 77),

2. 70pm, £4.50 (£3).


The Man In The Welsh Lunatic Asylum/The Man In The English Lunatic Asylum

Wales as this year’s Scotland, anyone? Maybe not, but it has had a high

cultural profile of late, which is music to the ears of writer Dedwydd Jones, author of these two connected j monologues which look at race and cultural identity. 1

’Both are parodies,’ says Jones, ’and come out of a sense of diSillu5ionment and disgust with the worst elements of the Welsh and English characters. The Welsh are obsessed With respectability, which makes for hypocrisy, while the English are driven mad by class and snobbery.’

Jones has long been a campaigner

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STAR RATINGS I hurt it Unmissable i ii at * Very good it it it Worth seeing ! t * Below average I * You’ve been warned




1300 HOURS £5 (£4.50)

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8—14 Aug 1997 mausm