Tag Archives: Travelling

Edinburgh: Last Days

edgelands (64 of 76)

An image of Third Angel’s Pills for Modern Living installation at Edgelands.

I find that I only really want to comment on a couple of the shows that I saw on day four and five, so I have decided to make a C-C-C-OMBO post. Followed by some very short reflections on Edgelands and Hitch.

Day the fourth

(g)host city – St. Antony’s by Kieran Hurley

(g)host city is an invisible festival without a venue. Or, rather, the city is the venue. A selection of audio pieces curated by Laura Cameron Lewis that you can download all of (7.99) or just  the ones you want to do (I downloaded Kieran’s from Bandcamp for £2). St. Antony’s plays out like you’ve found a phone fallen between some rocks in Holyrood Park. As if you picked it up and listened to the first voicemail by mistake and then slowly not been able to stop. I wonder if you could put the piece on a phone just like that? Be sent the location to a lost phone. Pick it up, listen. A small piece for a big place, this is one of my favourite experiences from the fringe. Not just for Kieran’s lovely ear for the idiosyncrasies of dialogue, or the gripping unfolding of increasingly tragic messages that are fated to never reach their receiver, but because Holyrood park, and Edinburgh, is fucking beautiful place. I enjoyed a moment of being embedded rather than transported in it.

2401 Objects – Analogue

Apart from the slightly disconcerting resemblance of one of the actors to a younger Hugh Laurie, I found plenty to enjoy in Analogue’s story of ‘the world’s most famous amnesiac patient’. It felt a lot more drama-y that Lecture Notes on a Death scene, and I don’t think it always benefited from that. (I’m very easily bored of ‘actor voice’, these days). But a really affecting story, told in quite a visually strong way; I liked very much the way the screen moved and wiped away scenes, like the dropping away of memories. I wanted the piece to be smaller though. It felt too big, the sense was of the wide world of scientific enquiry, when I think it should have been closer, more ‘in the head’ of Henry. The most powerful moment was the tying of it down to our bodies – the moment you’re asked to place your hands on your head. I felt like after acknowledging the audience so much at the beginning, it was strange to move into more conventional 4th wall stuff. A really interesting piece that I think could afford to be more tied down.

Day the fifth

The Adventures of Wound Man and Shirley – Chris Goode.

Not sure where to start on this one. THERE WAS JUST TOO MUCH LOVELINESS. Chris is a master of theatrical storytelling, his gentle, open and warm manner fill the Baby Grand and a simple 3 chair set (with associated teenage paraphernalia) becomes the scene of a devastating fire, the threshold of a school’s changing rooms, the back seat of a car, the formica tables of a poor Spud-u-Like imitation. A story about a superhero and a sidekick. Continue Reading →

Edinburgh: day the first

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image shared via CC on Flickr, click through for original

Haven’t quite worked out my policy* on blogging about shows I see in Edinburgh, yet, nor do I really have two spare hours to rub together to do so anyway… So expect sporadic at best. Will talk about things I love though. And Oh Fuck Moment (or ‘the show on at 5:30’ as the usher at St. George’s West demurely put it when she had to gather us together) is definitely one of them.

Supportively participative, by turn extremely funny, poignant, breathtaking, and wince-inducing as anything I’ve seen for a long while. And some fucking amazing writing. Chris Thorpe and Hannah Walker sit around a board meeting type table in a brightly lit magnolia coloured room with no windows, and talk to you about fuck ups. Really, monumental, absolutely no-way-back, fuck ups. And ask you about yours (mine was rubbish, I’m glad I didn’t read it out) and talk to you about chaos, and society, and how we learn from stupid, human mistakes, and how we like to pretend ‘we’re perfect beings who occasionally fuck up. Not Fuck Ups who occasionally do something perfect’.

It also had this amazing line. Which the second it came out of Hannah’s mouth I knew was Chris’, though only later did I really know how much.

‘He smoked cigarettes like they were an antidote to death’ (paraphrased, with apologies)

My best friend smokes like that. He also thinks he’s a fuck up. Because of a couple of things he did in his life which he can’t undo. Including not visiting his mother just before she died. When he was 15. 15. I wish we lived in a society that grew people who could forgive themselves for fuck ups like that. A society in which ‘fuck ups’ were more accepted would be one with much better politicians, press, and ensuing #ukriot debates, for a start.

And we would know who at the National Theatre called someone a ‘cunt’, too.

Today: Alma Mater, After the End, Alvin Sputnik, Bryony Kimmings, (g)host city, and Paper Disco.

P.S. It’s proper beautiful here.

*policy? Shut the fuck up, Hannah.