We're still publishing reviews from Fringe 2018. We're sorry about the delay, but if we saw your show on a press ticket, there will be a write-up. Do get in touch with us if you have any questions.

Mat Ricardo vs the World

"You can't sit there, for reasons of danger," warns Mat Ricardo as we enter the room. In truth, of course, we're completely safe in his hands – but there is something thrillingly risky about what we're about to witness. A quintessential showman and self-described "vaudeville schmuck", Ricardo's variety act is normally defined by faultless delivery and impeccable preparation; but this time around, he's knocked away those supports, and gives us instead a portrait of raw endeavour.

Review by Richard Stamp published on Tuesday 11 September | Read more

Kill the Beast: Director's Cut Theatre

Director Wallis Byrne Mattavers is trying to finish his latest horror ‘masterpiece’, ‘Rosemary’s Toddler’, but there's a problem: leading lady Viviene Stone has died. Disappearing props, affairs, an escaped chimpanzee and a haunted set are just some of the additional disasters to unfold, as the cast and crew frantically try to finish the accursed movie.

Review by Caroline Cawley published on Tuesday 11 September | Read more

The Story Beast: This Is Bardcore Comedy

Under a pile of leaves, next to a scrawny tree covered in fairy lights, the Story Beast lies. Jumping up he declares that the world will end in fifty-five minutes and, whether we like it or not, this will be the last show we will ever see. What follows is a series of sketches, songs and stories that will amaze, amuse, and astound the audience.

Review by Caroline Cawley published on Tuesday 11 September | Read more

When You Fall Down: The Buster Keaton Story Musicals & Opera

In January 1928, the famous film star Buster Keaton joined Metro-Goldwyn-Meyer Studios. This show imagines Keaton, in his famous suit and hat and with heavy monochrome face paint, introducing himself to his new colleagues - presenting a summary of his story thus far, by highlighting seven days when his life was changed.

Review by Caroline Cawley published on Tuesday 11 September | Read more

Sleeping Trees: World Tour Comedy

A rock-star welcome greets Sleeping Trees as they bound energetically onto the stage. The three-man troupe is a long-term fixture of the Edinburgh Fringe, and it's plain they have a loyal following in the room – but they have some startling news for the faithful. They're experimenting this year with "sketch theatre"… which is like a regular sketch show, except that it isn't funny. Don't worry though: they can't keep a straight face, and soon we're settled in for an hour of tight, high-tempo comedy.

Review by Richard Stamp published on Tuesday 11 September | Read more

Carmen Funebre Theatre

Huddled outside in a square hidden by buildings, the audience is confronted by blaring discordant music booming out from giant speakers. Amidst the darkness, two men on stilts wearing leather masks and billowing orange trousers stride into the square. Shining searchlights into the audience’s faces, these stalking figures with their cracking whips are terrifying.

Review by Caroline Cawley published on Tuesday 11 September | Read more

Not in Our Neighbourhood Theatre

A filmmaker called Maisey Mata is making a documentary about the Hauraki Women’s Refuge in Thames, New Zealand. Speaking directly to her camera are the women staying in the refuge, and the staff who are looking after them.

Review by Caroline Cawley published on Tuesday 11 September | Read more

You Are Frogs Theatre

There are some pieces of theatre which are so confident in their concept, so polished in their execution, that if you don't understand them it feels like the fault must surely lie with you. It's tempting, when that happens, to bluff your way through it; to praise the delivery, quietly ignoring the fact that the whole thing made no sense to you at all. But not I, dear reader. I am brave enough to tell you I have absolutely no idea what this piece was trying to say.

Review by Richard Stamp published on Tuesday 11 September | Read more

The Maids Theatre

Rarely have I changed my mind about a play as much as I did over this, Sudden Impulse's version of The Maids. While I was watching it, I hated almost everything about it: its grandstanding sexual deviancy, its relentless lack of subtlety, its scarcely-credible and seemingly over-wrought plot. But at some point between that night and the following morning, the penny dropped. This is a play which exists to provoke disgust – and the vehemence of my reaction is the measure of its success.

Review by Richard Stamp published on Tuesday 11 September | Read more

dressed. Theatre

Lydia Higginson tells us that dressed. “is about howling and being ready to listen if anyone howls back”. This inspiring, brave, and utterly stunning piece – which my words cannot do justice to – follows Higginson’s recovery after experiencing sexual violence, and how her three childhood friends supported her through it. dressed. evokes a tremendously raw emotional response, and radiates an uplifting, beautiful, and necessary story of friendship, solidarity and survival.

Review by Gabi Spiro published on Thursday 6 September | Read more

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