Review: Gash Theatre Gets Ghosted

Gash Theatre

Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Assembly Roxy Online

Described as a referential piece of immersive digital theatre, Gash Theatre Gets Ghosted is an exuberant and incisive piece of theatre. Opening with a credit sequence that references old B-movie styles, and continuing to pepper effects and tropes from the genre throughout the show, it is clear that Gash Theatre has embraced and celebrated its digital platform. This is not just theatre transferred onto film, but truly digital theatre which revels in the possibilities of this new hybrid art form.

The show opens with the two creators and performers Maddie Flint and Nathalie Ellis-Einhorn running away from some unknown pursuer and eventually finding their way into the apparent refuge of an abandoned apartment. However, all is not as it seems. Amidst old flyers and posters upturned TVs battered armchairs and flickering lamps two women find themselves haunted by the gendered expectations and outdated clichés that have been created by popular media. This apartment is possessed by the ghost of pop culture masculinities

Utilising references and soundbites from classic romantic comedies and other well-known film and TV scenes, over-the-top impressions of hegemonic masculinity in the form of a Kiss-singing werewolf, conscious exposure of theatrical artifice, and surreal chitchat between animate household objects, Gash Theatre creates and entertaining yet incisive piece of theatre which questions our assumptions around relationships sexuality and gender politics.

As they eventually break out of this den of macho masculinity the two performers invite us to consider what it would feel like to break out of the confines of cultural expectations and unplug the dominant narrative. Ellis-Einhorn and Flint are pushing boundaries in both theme and form. Gash Theatre Gets Ghosted is an accomplished and inventive piece of digital theatre, which demonstrates the technical capacity of its medium, while retaining an engaging theatrical essence at its core.

Gash Theatre Gets Ghosted is available on demand until 29th August as part of Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Review – Grimm’s Fairer Tales

Stories Alive

Pleasance Courtyard

06/08/18

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We’re all familiar with Grimm’s fairy tales such as Little Red Riding Hood, Hansel and Gretel, and Rumplestiltskin, but what if they were a little more fair than fairy? In his show Grimm’s Fairer Tales, Eden Ballantyne of Stories Alive sets out to tell more feminist versions of the brothers Grimm’s classic tales.

Starting with an exciting version of Red Riding Hood, called Red the Killer of Wolves, Ballantyne brings a number of children (and sometimes grown-ups) onto the stage to help him tell the story. The three stories that make up the show, Red Riding Hood, a version of Hansel and Gretel in which the titular characters are 30 years old and their parents abandon them at a job centre, and a version of Rumplestiltskin in which marriage isn’t a foregone conclusion and the women of the village are the heroes of the story, all present an updated twist on the classics for a 21st century audience.

Grimm’s Fairer Tales is an engaging and entertaining show, which delights the children and adults in the audience alike. Throughout the piece, the whole audience is given opportunities to get involved if they want to, and Ballantyne’s enthusiastic and attentive style of storytelling draws the whole room into the tale. Grimm’s Fairer Tales will make you laugh your socks off, at the same time as asking questions about women and girls’ roles in classic fairy tales. A charming and lively hour of storytelling, Grimm’s Fairer Tales is worth a watch!

Grimm’s Fairer Tales runs at Pleasance Courtyard until August 27th as part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.