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Edinburgh 2018 – Top Five Shows

Our reviewer Claire Minnitt had a whistle-stop visit to this year’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe, here’s her top five shows she managed to see …

Fringe

It’s that time of year once again, where the majestic city of Edinburgh is brimming with an immense assortment of creative endeavours from all over the world. Regular Fringe-goers have their own method of navigating through thousands of shows, many meticulously sticking to an almost militaristic itinerary. Whilst this may work for some, I have to say such methodology does not suit me and I therefore vowed this year to enjoy my brief five-day visit by basing my show choices purely on recommendations from friends, those who successfully pitched along the Mile and ones I simply stumbled across by sheer chance. Hence, here are my following Top 5 Edinburgh Fringe 2018 shows in no particular order.

 

Unsung

Fringe

Who: SKaGeN/KVS, Big in Belgium, Richard Jordan Productions, TRP, Summerhall

When: 12:00 / Aug 19, 21-26

Where: Summerhall (Venue 26)

@SKaGeNtheatre

Today we give you the all-time politician: the power junkie, rogue, strategist, but also the husband, father and in the end, the very lonely human’

Originally titled ‘Onbezongen’ before being directly translated from Flemish into English for the Fringe, Unsung is an innovative piece exploring the ‘DNA of the politician.’ Taking inspiration from an array of existing political figures Valentijn Dhaenens presents the audience with in-depth view of the life of a politician. Unsung has been incredibly successful in Belgium and has now continues to captivate Edinburgh audiences.

 

Hot Gay Time Machine

Fringe

Who: Zak Ghazi-Torbatti, Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss

When: 22:00 / Aug 19-26

Where: Underbelly, Cowgate (Venue 61)

@hotgaytheatre

‘Hot Gay Time Machine covers all the most important moments in a gay man’s life, from coming out to your mum to trying not to look at cocks in the locker room. So what are you waiting for? Gay marriage? Well, we got that already so come party with the gays’ 

Returning after an award-winning debut at the Fringe last year, Hot Gay Time Machine takes the audience on the most intensely musical journey through all the milestones in a gay man’s life. This incredibly cheeky show is bursting with energy, countless laughs and copious amounts of fun. It’s a guaranteed party-starter equipped with a beautiful poignancy that tackles important LGBT issues.

 

Six

Fringe

Who: Kenny Wax and Global Musicals

When: 15:30, 19:30 / Aug 19-27

Where: Underbelly, George Square (Venue 300)

@sixthemusical

‘Divorced. Beheaded. Live in concert!’

Whilst previously reviewed by thespyinthestalls.com earlier this year, it was such a joy to see this show in one of the Fringe’s more prominent venues. The original show has already made quite an impact at this year’s festival, and subsequently will immediately be transferred to London’s Arts Theatre at the end of the month. Six reclaims the stories of Henry VIII’s wives and is retold through a series of original songs in the forum of a pop concert.

Think Little Mix meets Horrible Histories but much, MUCH better! It’s definitely not one to miss.

Six is at the Arts Theatre, London from 30th August until 23rd September, click on image below for further details

Lola and Jo: Focus Groupies

Fringe

Who: Berk’s Nest

When: 16:00 / Aug 19-26

Where: Underbelly, Cowgate (Venue 61)

@lolaandjocomedy

‘Research purpose only; no refreshments, travel reimbursements or life-affirming insights. Laughter not guaranteed’ 

Lola and Jo are the ultimate female comedy duo you had no idea you needed in your life until you see one of their shows. Focus Groupies is a cleverly written sketch-show with an abundance of laughs, drizzled with the perfect amount of audience participation. It was so enjoyable that I felt obliged to drag my friends who had not yet been just so I could see it for a second time!

 

The Durham Revue present: Zeitgeist

Fringe

Who: The Durham Revue

When: 13:20 / Aug 19 – 26

Where: Underbelly, Cowgate (Venue 61)

@TheDurhamRevue

‘Known for their irreverent style and peerless chemistry, they are ‘highly professional, wonderfully witty and perfectly paced’’ 

It is a universal fact that there is no shortage of sketch comedy at the Edinburgh Fringe however, well-established student group, The Durham Revue in many ways rises above the others. Their sketches are punchy, topical and often beautifully bizarre. Additionally, it’s rather refreshing to a see a young comedy group with strong performances from both the female and male members. With performances in the early afternoon it’s certainly a perfect start to your typical Fringe day.

 

Recommendations by Claire Minnitt



 

Edinburgh Festival Fringe

until 27th August

 

 

 

Meet Our Reviewers

Meet Our Reviewers

It’s hard to believe that thespyinthestalls.com has now been around for three years. Starting off single-handedly reviewing a couple of shows, we’re now covering fifty plus performances a month. This growth couldn’t have been achieved without our wonderful team of volunteer reviewers. They come from all walks of life with many different backgrounds – united by their love of theatre. Usually you only get to see a name credit at the end of their reviews, but here we now get to meet a couple of the team.

 

Emily

@Em_KN92 

Meet

I’ve been reviewing for thespyinthestalls.com for just under a year and my only regret is not starting sooner! Two of my main passions are theatre and writing, so it made sense to combine the two and find a site to start writing for.
I like the fact that reviewing has allowed me to visit a variety of different theatres and see shows I wouldn’t have necessarily known about otherwise. When I’m not working as a charity fundraiser or writing for thespyinthestalls.com, I enjoy performing with a North London based musical theatre company and singing and playing guitar.
Here’s just a few of the shows Emily has reviewed this year
Eugenius! |★★★★ | The Other Palace
Cyril’s Success | ★★★ | Finborough Theatre
Baby Box | ★★★★ | King’s Head Theatre
Finishing the Picture | ★★★★ | Finborough Theatre
Mr Stink | ★★★★★ | Chickenshed Theatre

 

Steve

@SteveSparrow1

Meet

When I retired from working three years ago I looked at what I wanted to focus my time on and attending more theatre shows was on my list. In my first year I saw around a hundred shows in the West End and London Fringe as well as in my local Cambridge area.
To keep abreast of activity in the theatre world I followed several accounts on Twitter including thespyinthestalls.com. It was by following this account I became a reviewer; how it happened was I won a competition to see Adam & Eve and Steve. The show was terrific and I messaged to thank the site for the tickets. In their reply they asked if I knew of anyone who would be interested in reviewing. I thought – well I see a couple of shows a week, I believe I know the difference between good and not so good, so why not have a go?
Following the usual trial I had my first show to review – The Cardinal at the Southwark Playhouse. I thoroughly enjoyed the show but rather than coming away with my wife having a general ‘what did you think about that?’ chat, I was on my own with a pressing review to write. I must confess that I found it really difficult at first and spent many hours trying to get my thoughts onto the computer screen. But I did it, pressed send and after a few tweaks from the team my first review was available to the world. It was an exciting moment for me.
Since then I have seen the website grow and have completed almost thirty reviews seeing some quite amazing productions … along with only a couple that didn’t quite hit the spot. Whilst I’m a couple of hours away from most London venues I try my best to fit in as many as my rather full diary allows. I am also pleased to have introduced a regional reviewer to the site.
I don’t usually hang around for photos or autographs after shows, but got this snap of me and the very talented Lucy Penrose who was starring in Judy! at the Arts Theatre. In conclusion it is great fun being a reviewer for thespyinthestalls.com.
Here’s just a few of the shows Steve has reviewed this year
Bananaman |★★★ | Southwark Playhouse
Heretic Voices | ★★★★ | Arcola Theatre
Songs for Nobodies | ★★★★ | Wilton’s Music Hall
Moonfleece | ★★★ | Pleasance Theatre
Pressure | ★★★★ | Park Theatre

 

 

Join Us

We turn down more shows than we actually get to review, this is because we just don’t have enough reviewers to cover everything we’d like to. We’re always looking for reliable people who would be interested in joining our team.

 

Click here to find out more and apply.