* * * Intriguing political drama
Julius Caesar (Richard Godden). Photo © Rob Gray
Tue 26 – Sat 30 November 2013
Review by Hugh Simpson
Thought-provoking and challenging, Edinburgh Graduate Theatre Group’s Julius Caesar is an intriguing if ultimately somewhat uneven production.
There are certainly some modern resonances to Shakespeare’s story of the assassination of Caesar and its consequences, dealing as it does with the nature of power and how it is wielded.
The moral struggles of Brutus as he decides to throw his lot in with Cassius’s conspiracy in order to preserve the Rome he loves are more at the centre of the play than the character of Caesar, while the second half of the story is more about the … Continue reading Review – Julius Caesar
Pamela Reid, Jacqueline Hannan and Deborah Whyte in Kiss, Cuddle Torture
Tuesday 17 November 2013
Review by J. A. Sutherland
Often after reading a novel, a poem or watching a film we can be left asking ‘what was that about?’. On the surface, Black Dingo Productions’ Kiss, Cuddle, Torture is a bleak drama about domestic violence.
But a large amount of this play’s message lies beneath the skin – or more crudely, the bruises. The strength of the writing in Jennifer Adam’s first full-length play is that it doesn’t seek to provide easy answers.
Originally staged during the fringe in the intimate setting of a … Continue reading Review – Kiss, Cuddle, Torture (revisited)
Adam House Theatre
Wed 10 – Sat 13 April
Review by Thom Dibdin
There’s a rich, dense texture to the Grads Scottish premiere of Jerusalem, at the Adam House Theatre until Saturday. It has a mythic feel inspired by Blake’s hymn Jerusalem, the text of which frames the piece as if it were being stalked by Gog and Magog.
The Grads had already taken on a huge task by giving the first production on Scottish soil of Jez Butterworth’s brilliant, heartfelt cry for the real soul of England to stand up and be counted in the face of greed and oppression.
To find themselves doing so in the week that Thatcher died both adds to the burden and makes the task easier. The play has suddenly become … Continue reading Review – Jerusalem
* * * *
David Grimes (Flan), Lorraine McCann (Ouisa) and Kenneth Brangman (Paul) in the Grads' Six Degrees of Separation. Photo © The Grads
Review By Thom Dibdin
Responsible for popularising the idea that every person in the world is just six connections from every other, John Guare’s Six Degrees of Separation is a play about greed and envy; about what happens when those six connections are reduced to just one.
It is set in the rarified atmosphere of New York’s Fifth Avenue in the early 1990s, where the privileged few hold dinner parties and worry about finding another $2 million to fund the purchase of a Cezanne.
Ross Hope brings a clear directorial style to the Grads’ excellently staged production, prioritising the play itself over the creation of side-splitting characters. A simple, open set and Gordon Hughes’ strong lighting design help keep everything clear.
Grads newcomer Kenneth Brangman takes on the lead role of Paul, a … Continue reading Review – Six Degrees of Separation
Glengarry Glen Ross Poster
Adam House Theatre
By Thom Dibdin
Chunky and muscular, David Mamet’s Glengarry Glen Ross brings out the naturally bilious language and atavistic tendencies of hard working men on the front-line of American dream at the end of the 20th Century.
This is the world of real-estate salesmen. A pack of beings whose own interests always come first, followed by – but always superior to – those of the group. The clients, those buying plots of as-yet unexploited land, are no more than prey, to be cajoled and corralled into a purchase.
Debutante director Yvonne Paterson begins to find the true viciousness of this world, … Continue reading Æ Review – Glengarry Glen Ross
The Makars in Agatha Christie's The Hollow
Review by Thom Dibdin
There is nothing sleepy about the Hollow to which the Angkatells have retired in this country house weekend murder mystery from the Makars, which is at Adam House until Saturday.
At least there’ll be no dozing when family friend and Harley Street doctor John Cristow comes down for the weekend, to join Sir Henry, Lady Lucy and young Henrietta, a successful sculptor.
Cristow might arrive with dim but dependable wife Gerda – but it quickly becomes clear that cousin Henrietta knows him rather more intimately than she should, while the famous American movie star who has taken up residence in a cottage down the road turns out to be Cristow’s lost true love.
As Cristow, Derek Melon creates the kind of arrogance that is … Continue reading Æ Review – Agatha Christie’s The Hollow