This years’s Edinburgh Fringe showcases 3,269 shows from 48 countries in 294 venues across Edinburgh, so it’s hard to know where to start. How about sampling one of these excellent pieces of new writing:
Five-star sell-out comedy from Vaults Festival London and Lyric Hammersmith exploring whether our lives are predetermined or shaped by our choices. A Viscera Theatre production written by Roxy Dunn (Channel 4), director Chris Head, performers Alys Metcalf (The Play That Goes Wrong, West End) and Roxy Dunn (Channel 4’s Babylon, BBC Three’s Top Coppers).
Tired of her highly paid sales job, Rachel makes a move into social work only to find herself involved in a controversial case bringing her into the media’s unforgiving gaze. Villain tells the story of a woman who wants to make a difference. A new one-woman show. Dark, topical and hilarious in places.
Jonny Labey (EastEnders) leads this lyrical ensemble production as WWI poet Rupert Brooke, whose glittering image hid a complex and fretful personality. Living the counter-culture of the Edwardian summer, the young poet played the many parts required of him, exploiting yet despairing at his ability to leave a trail of bruised egos and broken hearts through the upper echelons of society. Based on his letters and poetry, Brooke is put centre stage in this dynamic and moving portrait of a flawed genius.
The word bubbemeises is a Yiddish term meaning ‘a grandmother’s story’, ‘an old wives’ tale’. Writer and street performer Nick Cassenbaum, along with his Klezmer musicians, invite you into the warmth of the Canning Town Schvitz, East London’s last remaining authentic bathhouse. Amongst the steam and ritual Nick will take you on a journey of discovery to find the place where he belongs. Schlapping through summer camps, barbershops and Spurs games, will he find what he’s looking for? Bubble Schmeisis is full of intimate and personal true stories about identity, home and getting schmeised (washed) by old men.
Walrus’ award-winning show returns to Edinburgh in Paines Plough’s Roundabout. ‘Let’s just talk until it goes.’ The average person will speak 123,205,750 words in a lifetime. But what if there were a limit? Oliver and Bernadette are about to find out. This two-person show imagines a world where we’re forced to say less. It’s about what we say and how we say it; about the things we can only hear in the silence; about dead cats, activism, eye contact and lemons, lemons, lemons, lemons, lemons.