Sunday, 14 August 2016

EdFringe Review: Swansong at the Pleasance Courtyard

Pleasance Courtyard
Running Time: 1 hour
Reviewed on Friday 12th August 2016 

Funny, raw and real, Swansong follows four characters as they toy with the tipping scales of life and death as the only four people left alive. Aside from being mildly attacked by paint (serves me right for sitting in the front row), I loved Swansong. The story begins when the rain has stopped and four strangers are left floating in a swan shaped pedalo. Writers Sadie Spencer and Tom Black have created characters that fit together like a perfectly mismatched jigsaw puzzle. 

Each of the four characters seem to be a stepping stone in the realisation of their reality. You have humour, in the shape of a goofy lad who tries to convince a vegan that she would really love to devour a bloody steak. Then you have fantasy, crafted by a girl who believes in fate and that the moon will pull them to safety. You also have determination, portrayed by the driven character of Claire and, finally, disdain – the voice of the sarcastic realist usually sat in the back corner of the pedalo, grunting.

These characters click and clash throughout the story and cleverly portray the darker scenes (losing their minds, murdering a swan) through beautiful, harmonised singing and movement. The entire play is enchanting and utterly hypnotising as you follow the characters to the bitter end. Swansong is a strong piece of new writing and each actor is faultless, this should be at the top of your EdFringe list… although perhaps ensure you don’t go on an empty stomach.

Reviewed by Lucy Beirne

Swansong runs at the Pleasance Courtyard until Monday 29th August 2016. Click here for info and tickets.

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