Edinburgh Fringe 2022: Day 1
DOWNTOWN, the world’s largest arts festival, resembles Skid Row.
Mini tornadoes of detritus are flying into the faces of pedestrians.
Cleaners in Edinburgh have begun an 11 day strike – local authorities on Friday increased their pay offer from 3.5 per cent to 5 per cent, but until they accept it, the Edinburgh industrial action will continue.
I will be writing to Ms Sturgeon.
Anyway, the first good thing about Myra DuBois, as far as I can glean, is that she isn’t taking prisoners.
Uptown, DuBois – at The Dairy Room, Underbelly – ferociously addresses our problems in her camp comedy chat that flamethrowers good taste – the whole hour feels like being kicked in the shins and rolled in glitter.
Her biting wit is on fine form as the scathing diva berates audience members’s dress sense and first world problems. If I was measuring pleasure in decibels then the screams and squirms would sound like a joyous riot.
This may not be a show for sensitive souls whose idea of a jolly evening is sitting at home reading Anxious For Nothing.
Overall, really, really wickedly funny.
We’ve all read in horror describing the bureaucratic hurdles facing asylum seekers, and the inhumane Rwanda policy but plonking Exodus makes us wish we could book a one way ticket there for ourselves.
The point of this show, i guess, is to be on the nose on a topical subject – all the best shows on television, film and stage are.
I had high hopes for this timely play at Traverse. Unfortunately, Uma Nada-Rajah’s farce about an MP using refugee intolerance to get ahead is depressingly clunky and lacks imagination.
The attempts at farce are painful, though. I blame the director, not the spirited all-female cast.
The play revolves around Home Secretary Asiya Rao, a Priti Patel clone played with some flare by Aryana Ramkhalawon.
This MP sets about a policy to stop migrants crossing the channel by erecting a radioactive barrier.
I lost the will to live after 20 minutes.
Max Fosh is a YouTuber with over a million subscribers. Unfortunately, his debut live show Zocial Butterfly is a laboured and repetitive experience.
Playing games with the audience and combining it with tepid stand-up, Foss supports his act with a slideshow and clips of his self proclaimed greatest moments.
Nevertheless, “The A to Z of conversation” one of the games he plays – starting the first word of each sentence in a conversation in the same order as the alphabet – is just kind of mediocre.
For his casual stage show, charismatic Fosh cracks jokes about his penis, the exotic name Gary, and his diverse education at Harrow. Hardly radical.
Over at Summerhall the press team are on roller-skates. Literally.
Riffing on modern gay culture, Samuel Barnett is wildly ingenious in Marcelo Dos Santos hot play Feeling Afraid As If Something Terrible Is Going to Happen.
Barnett is consistently amusing and greatly enhanced by his playful, forceful manner.
Meanwhile, Matthew Xia’s startling and intelligent production marries filthy eloquence with sheer silliness that makes you laugh out loud. Pretty and witty and gay.
One of the top picks of Edinburgh Fringe 2022, Kathy and Stella Solve A Murder: a joyous piece of theatre about two hapless best friends from Hull who host a true-crime podcast.
Written and directed by Jon Brittain (Baby Reindeer), with irreverent music and lyrics by Matthew Floyd Jones (Frisky and Mannish) – it’s the most promising thing I’ve seen at the Fringe.
Performed by a cast of excellent five, actors Rebekah Hinds (Kathy) and Bronté Barbé (Stella) root the heart in the hysteria.
Also from Fleabag producer Francesca Moody, this larky whodunnit mini-musical is a complete one-off: a little bit weird, totally charming, bags of fun and very, very sweet. I loved the songs.
This show deserves a further life.
Kill for a ticket.
Myra DuBois’ A Problem Shared
Feeling Afraid As If Something Terrible Is Going to Happen
Kathy and Stella Solve a Murder