We decided weeks before the Festival began that this would be the year when we finally got round to chatting to TW favourite Michael Legge, here on the pages of your ThreeWeeks magazine. He's back with his new show 'Tell It Like It Is, Steve'. "What's the bloody point of anything ever? I don't know" runs the blurb. This was all going to be so perfect. Then we forgot to organise the interview. And so it came to pass that ThreeWeeks co-Editor Chris Cooke got out of bed super early on press day to put together some well-researched, well-crafted questions for the man himself. Those were then sent via the finest of electronic channels to Michael's laptop where he – having also got up extra early – tackled the interview now before him. And here are the results...

ThreeWeeks' Chris Cooke chats to Michael about his show here
Three recommended shows for Thursday at the Edinburgh Festival 2015.

Michael Legge
So, our Week Two issue hit the streets today and, of course, we must recommend this week's cover star Michael Legge. Says our reviewer this year: "The hour simply flies by, packed with strong routines building on the theme of the regret you can feel after meeting your heroes. One thing's for certain: you won't regret meeting Michael Legge".
The Stand, until 30 Aug.

Nish Kumar – Long Word... Long Word... Blah Blah Blah... I'm so Clever
"In the sweatiest room at the Fringe, Nish Kumar puts on an outstanding display of middle class, sympathetic outrage" says we. "It's probably fair to say that Edinburgh is currently overpopulated with comedians lamenting the idiocy of politicians and British society at large, and to an already convinced audience. But Kumar is self aware enough and, most importantly, funny enough to stand out above the rest". Go see.
Pleasance Courtyard, until 30 Aug.

"How much fun can you have with one suitcase, some clothes and an audience? Flabbergast Theatre, creators of Boris and Sergey, prove that the limits are almost endless with this irresistible show" reads our 5/5 glowing review. "Seeing 'Tatterdemalion' is a beautiful and hilarious experience that will stay with you – clowning has never been so enchanting or absorbing".
Assembly Roxy, until 31 Aug.

Look out for a daily Three To See each day in the ThreeWeeks Daily, and for Three To See recommendations all year round in London click here.

Look out for copies all over Edinburgh or read the online version here.

Inside: Michael Legge, Ian Smith, Puddles Pity Party, Ben Norris, Angella Kwon, Ali McGregor, Moby Alpha, Stephen Tobolowsky, Barely Methodical Troupe, Elvis McGonagall, James Bran, Chris Dugdale, plus Festival news and lots of reviews.
It's the TW Podcast at the Edinburgh Festival. And a little bit later than advertised (host Chris had a show to perform, OK?) here comes the very latest edition featuring Neil Henry, Penny Ashton, 'Wendy Hoose', Mid-Brow and 'Jesus Camp: The Musical Comedy'.

Listen and subscribe to the TW Podcast here
With Puddles Pity Party taking the Fringe by storm, we thought we'd ask the man himself to walk us through the Festival, providing his interpretation and thoughts on each of the genres that appear as part of Edinburgh's Fringe.

Check out Puddles' picture guide to the Fringe here
OK, we gave you an update on The Scotsman's first batch of Fringe First winners last weekend, but – in our bid to namecheck every winner at this darn Festival – we ought to put down on record the first set of winners of The Herald's festival gongs too, The Angels.

And that particular paper has been busy bigging up both 'Correction', by VerTeDance, Jirí Havelka and Clarinet Factory at Zoo, and the much acclaimed and pretty much sold out (though you might still get a ticket for the extra big showing at Assembly) 'Fake It 'Til You Make It', from Fringe legend Bryony Kimmings.

The Herald also gave a Little Devil Award to the team behind the Underbelly Circus Hub, in recognition of them getting the venue up and running despite strong winds causing problems at the very start of the Fringe.

The Stage has also already dished out some of its Acting Excellence prizes for Festival 2015, giving over awards to Molly Vevers for her performance in 'Ross And Rachel' at Assembly George Square Theatre, and to Aoife Duffin for her performance in 'A Girl Is A Half-Formed Thing' at the Trav.

Got time for some more? Well, Fringe Review has given its first Outstanding Theatre Award to Babolin Theatre for 'The Frantic Canticles Of Little Brother Fish' at the Bedlam.

And finally for now, well done to the winners of the second ever Comedy Poster Awards, which gave its panel prize to Tom Parry off of Pappys for the poster to his show 'Yellow T-Shirt', while the punter-voted award went to the many and various poster designs for Free Fringe show 'Expect The Unexporcupine' (one of which is pictured above). And they really are rather good, says I. And I've analysed a fair few Fringe posters in my time.

Bebe+Luna Present...Cabaret Farce! (Bebe+Luna Present)
Cabaret set in a bar, with a live band and several accordions dotted around the room; makes you feel like you've walked into a 20s jazz club. It isn't until the show gets going, and the carefully crafted chaos ensues, that you realise everything is not quite as it seems. Bebe + Luna take to the stage to dazzle the unsuspecting audience, with big laughs and even bigger musical numbers ruling the show, as they work modern hits in with their take on the classics. Costume changes, stripteases, sequins and glamour, this show has it all. There's even a kazoo solo that will knock your socks off –and how often in a lifetime do you get to say that?
Momentum Venues @ St Stephens, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Bethan Highgate-Betts]

We Can Make You Happy (House of Blakewell / Vicky Graham Productions)
A musical force to be reckoned with, 'We Can Make You Happy' is loud, colourful and lots of fun. Alice and Harry take us on a tongue-in-cheek journey, exploring happiness and the fads and tricks to becoming a happy person. This is a show that expects you to get up out of your seat and join in, whether that's singing along, dancing or getting up on stage. The hilariously funny, musical delights punctuate the story of the duo's ups and downs on the road to happiness. With each taking opposing outlooks on life, the show is the perfect balance between sarcasm and sincerity. Treat yourself to a heart-warming hour of laughs, guaranteed to make you smile.
Assembly George Square Gardens, until 31 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Bethan Highgate-Betts]


The Hunting Of The Snark (Alice House Theatre)
All singing, all dancing - 'The Hunting of the Snark' is infectiously funny children's theatre that the whole family can get on board with. It's an hour in which you will not stop laughing. This modern take on the Lewis Carroll classic sees a group of adventurers take to the seven seas, in search of the ever elusive Snark. Although the characterisation can sometimes rely heavily upon stereotypes, the story is endearing. Live music comes in the form of Steve and his guitar, with big musical numbers punctuating the story and engaging the giggling audience. The Green is a spectacular space, but once you throw in the puppetry and props you've got an experience you'd struggle to find elsewhere.
Pleasance Courtyard, until 31 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Bethan Highgate-Betts]


Ian Smith: Whereabouts (CKP)
Back with his third hour of stand-up, Ian Smith again presents a very well written show. Starting with five minutes of working the audience, his sheer energy and willingness for us to enjoy ourselves was clear to see throughout. Not only do the show's threads intertwine in a very satisfying manner, but Smith continuously manages to produce laughs from a variety of sources. Theme tunes, wikihows and one very expensive prop later and everyone is on his side. His audience interaction was perfectly executed and well timed, and included some of the finest granite material on the circuit. Performed enthusiastically, written with a fine eye for detail and presented warmly, 'Whereabouts' is a hugely entertaining show for all.
Pleasance Courtyard, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 5/5 | [Ben Shannon]

The Pin: Ten Seconds With The Pin (The Pleasance)
The Pin have created a sketch show, the only problem is they have limited material! Fortunately the two stars of the show display fantastic ability and take humour to the next level as they spend their set hilariously replaying and editing sketches to 'pad the show out'. We are already in stitches, yet then they somehow make what they are doing even funnier. Clever punch lines demonstrate the duo's flair for written comedy, as they use their incisive wit and smart humour to keep us laughing. The better material seems more heavily weighted to the first half, when the editing gag is still fresh, and towards the end I perhaps started to feel the concept's bite waning; but overall a great show by a really funny duo who know how to entertain an audience.
Pleasance Dome, until 31 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Stephanie Withers]

zazU: A Fête Worse Than Death (zazU Comedy)
zazU invite you into their parallel world, conveniently also named zazU, where the village fête is on soon, and both singing and bare feet are illegal. That sums up the sort of territory we're entering here. A fast hour of bizarre sketch comedy, with some supremely tasteless jokes, zazU's show builds a web of recurring, intertwining characters and situations. Gradually you realise it's developing a twisted, ridiculous narrative, and as the minutes rack up you'll start asking yourself if zazU have any chance – or intention – of pulling all these strands together. Answer: yes. Taking refuge in abject silliness, they just about pull it off. Weird, ridiculous, borderline offensive – if none of these things bother you, you'll have a great time.
Pleasance Courtyard, until 31 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Jon Stapley]

Improvabunga: Funny Side Up (The Watch This Improv Troupe)
Billed as a show that the audience creates, through the use of various props and some ingenious buzzers, tonight's piece begins to take shape: A period drama set in an old peoples home – 'Where Art My Glasses?' Grace Hussey-Burd hosts the proceedings well and a particular mention should go to Chris Conway who tonight got the most play, and excelled throughout. Though the biggest laugh of the night came from an audience member, it shouldn't take away from the fact that this is a highly enjoyable show with some decent talent on display. To their credit they never broke character and, though they occasionally stepped on each others' toes, the overall performance was polished and entertaining.
theSpace On The Mile until 29 Aug.
tw rating 3/5 | [Ben Shannon]

Adventures In Menstruating (Chella Quint / PBH's Free Fringe)
This comedy show is very serious when it comes to the science of the matter. Chella Quint sets out to rid us of the period myths we might be harbouring, and to expose the hypocrisies of menstruation-related product advertising. With her endearing comedy, Quint sets her audience at ease right from the beginning. You might think menstruation isn't that funny, and maybe you're right, but it turns out that the myths surrounding it are pretty hilarious. There are prizes to be won and interaction is actively encouraged - there's even a group menstruation-themed dance everyone can get involved with. This show shouldn't just be on at the Fringe, it should be on the curriculum.
Stafford Centre, until 28 Aug
tw rating 4/5 | [Bethan Highgate-Betts]

John Robins: Speakeasy (Phil McIntyre)
John Robins has once again brought a very well-crafted show to the Fringe: the language and turns of phrase scattered throughout the set give the impression that Robins has deliberated tirelessly over every word. This year's performance contains strong material covering a range of subjects (including social media stereotypes, internet histories and Twitter bios), though it's towards the end of the show, where Robins begins to discuss redemption, that you can really see his passion for the art of stand-up comedy. The hour simply flew by in his company and, though he rarely strayed from his set, when there were stumbles his recovery was slick. Robins has established himself as a sure thing at the Fringe, consistently delivering well-thought-out pieces.
Assembly George Square Studios, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Ben Shannon]

Massive Dad 2.0: Step Up 2 Massive Dad (The Pleasance)
The Dads are back. Utilising projection, storyboards, voiceovers and a couple of coat hangers, sketch trio Massive Dad have created a show that hits some amazing high notes, even if it doesn't quite manage it consistently. While the laughs are plentiful, and the performances sublime, the writing feels slightly unpolished. A few jokes don't land, with some sketches ending anticlimactically while others outstay their welcome – most notably a cop show read-through and a Scandinavian folk band. That said, when Massive Dad are good, they're really good. The final sketch, a parody of shows that use folksy puppetry and faux-poetry to explore Serious Topical Issues, is witheringly accurate, providing a storming end to a slightly uneven hour.
Pleasance Dome, until 31 Aug.
tw rating 3/5 | [Jon Stapley]


Dolls (Cirk La Putyka)
Cirk La Putyka explores the obsessive relationship we have with inanimate objects. Though satisfyingly strange and aesthetically pleasing, the choreography of Dolls is a bit chaotic. A lot of the time there is far too much going on; the constant fast passed music, and screaming from performers feels too much. The set has half a dolls house in the background, and is obviously incredible, however this huge depth of field in combination with the lighting and stage smoke (which is used far too often), make it difficult to see. Do not get me wrong; the show has some amazing, heart-pumping scenes. The performers are amazing at flinging themselves in the air and the concept is interesting. It just needs more diversity of sound and movement in its exploration.
Underbelly's Circus Hub on The Meadows, until 29 Aug.
tw rating 3/5 [Zita Campbell]

BARBU Electro Trad Cabaret (Underbelly Productions and Cirque Alfonse)
Canadian troupe Cirque Alfonse have turned traditional circus upside down: this show is not for the faint-hearted. Yes, 'BARBU' features the customary acrobatics, magic and juggling, but they've been turbocharged and turned up to 11. Sound-tracked by its own astonishing electro trad band, this is a silly, sexy circus rave, crammed with breathtaking, gravity-defying manoeuvres and tests of skill. The performers appear to possess superhuman strength, pushing their bodies to the very limits of possibility. It could tread the line of pretension, were it not for the fact that the show is infused with great humour, making it funny and mesmerising all at once. Expect beards, roller skates, golf clubs, a human disco ball and much, much more.
Underbelly's Circus Hub on The Meadows, until 29 Aug.
tw rating 5/5 | [Daisy Malt]


Alchemy Of The Piano (Will Pickvance)
Part explanation, part conversation, part improvisation, your hour with Will Pickvance is a celebration of distraction, an invitation to relaxation, and an illustration of – talent. This master of one liners and virtuosic, genre-blending performance takes you on a journey: asking famous pieces 'What if?', giving interpretations via paper plane, and freeing music from 'the administrative jargon of dots on the page'. Hardcore musos will enjoy moments of humour when they recognize a melody showing up somewhere unexpected. These range from Glen Miller to Madonna, Strauss to the 'Star-Spangled Marseillaise'. The less initiated can just sit back enjoy what Pickvance calls 'extracting junk from the piano', and what I call a charming, blissful concert.
Summerhall, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Lucy Diver]

Simon Thacker's Svara-Kanti
This too short hour of virtuosic Baul music – re-imagined by guitarist Simon Thacker – reinterpreted Bengal's traditional, mystical song. Relaxing and invigorating in turns, the interweaving of punk, funk, flamenco and soul with Baul ensured it was not too unfamiliar for western ears. Thacker was not the only great artist entertaining us this evening, Raju das Baul has travelled from Bengal to sing beautifully, telling the traditional stories of his culture with clarity and sensitivity. Tabla master Sarvar Sabri played with deceptive ease, demonstrating why this hardest of percussion instruments is also the most expressive. A highlight was Menokaa Maathaay Dilo Ghomtaa fusing cutting edge guitar technique with traditional eastern instruments. The 'Made in Scotland' initiative has excelled itself.
Summerhall, till 23 Aug.
tw rating 5/5 | [Louise Rodgers]


Orpheus And Eurydice (About Turn)
About Turn make opera look casual and easy – as if it were as normal for young people as a pub trip. I won't call this a "renaissance" because even that sounds too posh, when the words I want are cool and current, funny and fun. Many elements were first-class: costuming, choreography, and the bold but simple concept - rather than bringing Eurydice back from Hades, it's bringing her out of a coma. The performances of both chorus and principals were full-bodied and absorbing, particularly Olivia Clarke's near perfect Eurydice. With a few upgrades to set changes and lighting, and an extra shot of chemistry between the lead pair (surely a kiss isn't too much to ask?), this could be flawless.
theSpace @ Venue 45, until 29 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Lucy Diver]


Greyhound: Journey Through The Dark Heart of America (Matt Panesh/ PBH Free Fringe)
Told with a 'chap telling you a story down the pub' kind of vibe, Matt Panesh gives a riveting account of the American character that reeks of personality. This verbatim tale of his experience on a Greyhound bus in the deep American middle held me utterly transfixed, with every character convincingly formed. He breaks down the compulsive lie of the American dream - that hard work always results in success- by bringing to life those who have been spat out by a prejudiced machine, and the vibrant characters he introduces us to open our eyes to the social problems of America. Panesh's narrative is so gripping that is never feels like a performance or a monologue; it's like living it.
Banshee Labyrinth, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Robert Stevens]


Le Gateau Chocolat: Black (Assembly Festival, Soho Theatre and nitroBEAT)
Fans of cabaret star Le Gateau Chocolat may be surprised: the glitter and costumes are stripped away here for an autobiographical, musical tale of growing up black, gay, fat and depressed. His voice is unbelievably beautiful, from opera to a chilling rendition of Billie Holiday's 'Strange Fruit', though some lighter songs may have helped to add balance. There was a localised rain storm over my face after his gorgeous, stripped down rendition of 'I Wanna Dance With Somebody' (no, I wasn't crying at a Whitney Houston song). The songs are interspersed with animated tales of his childhood and recorded interviews. Though it veers dangerously close to being self-indulgent and a little too bleak, this is a powerful story about depression, self-doubt and, ultimately, transformation.
Assembly Hall, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 3/5 | [Gemma Scott]

Billy Through The Window: Bellow Theatre
From Mark Haddon's 'Curious Incident' to Tom Hanks' Forrest Gump, portrayals of those with learning difficulties are often gimmicky and romanticised, but Tabitha Mortiboy's startling 'Billy Through The Window' is a remarkable departure from that hackneyed tradition. Joe and Billy run away to the woods, away from their care home where they do everything together. Forever trying to just be normal, Joe manically drags Billy through an afternoon of adolescent exploration, spliffs, porn and booze. Joe, memorably acted by Joe O'Toole, is a poignantly challenging character, catastrophically volatile and tragically vulnerable. The brilliance of the play lies in its affecting, immersive claustrophobia, as the tender, autumnal, beauty of the hideaway fades into feverish horror. Much of me wanted to help; more of me wanted to leave.
Underbelly Cowgate, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Patrick Galbraith]

Dearly Beloved (Lemon Squeeze Productions)
Three people are stuck together in limbo, trying to work out how to move into the afterlife. The young mother, middle-aged businessman and teenage girl make an unlikely trio, but the characters forge strong relationships. They are also aided by the unlikely figure of a celestial tea lady, whose guidance helps them to be honest about their lives. The characters are thoughtfully performed and the progress of their self-discovery is an engaging process to watch. The play is let down by some jarring directorial choices, however: the actors spend a lot of time with their backs to the audience, and there was very little variation of pace. Nevertheless, this is a touching piece with moments of very genuine emotion.
theSpace on Niddry Street, until 29 Aug.
tw rating 3/5 | [Vicki Baron]

Ernie (Lisa Richards)
'Ernie' is James Craze's attempt to dramatise his late grandfather's life, based on an unpublished autobiography he wrote shortly before passing. Almost by accident, Ernie Hort led an incredibly rich and diverse life. Yet herein lies a small problem - Craze's grandfather's life was fairly long, and a Fringe play is quite short. Purely mathematically, Craze's task is pretty difficult. It's pulled off for the most part due to a charming and charismatic performance, but the play always feels rushed - Ernie's lifelong relationship with his wife, for example, is condensed into roughly three sentences. But despite its brevity, 'Ernie' is a moving piece of storytelling drama, and Craze's energy suits the play's hurried pace.
Gilded Balloon, until 31 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Robert Stevens]

Filthy Talk For Troubled Times (Phantom Owl Productions)
Through a series of thought-provoking, harrowing monologues, Neil LaBute's classic script exposes us to the innermost thoughts of six characters, and we are challenged to understand their American intolerance. Director Matthew Lillard has choreographed his actors with a perfect level of subtlety. When one actor takes the lead, the lights dimming around him, the other five are still present – be that physically or, in the case of Waitress 2, in the occasional, haunting echo of her words. There are times when the monologues become uncomfortable, the actor's eyes piercing into the audience as if judging our response. In that sense it's not a pleasant hour, but then it was never meant to be.
Basic Mountain, until 31 Aug.
tw rating 3/5 | [Stephanie Gray]

I Am Not Myself These Days (Fuel and Tom Stuart)
I wasn't expecting to be so moved by this, yet the emotions it stirred up lingered for the rest of the day, never quite leaving. It's a one-man show, adapted from Josh Kilmer-Purcell's memoir of the same name, which I hadn't read but now intend to. It recounts Kilmer-Purcell's life in New York in the 90s, working in advertising by day, performing as drag queen Aquadisiac by night, as well as his relationship with a high-class rent boy addicted to crack. If that sounds tawdry and seedy, well, it possibly was, but in the hands of writer-performer Tom Stuart it is also profoundly affecting, by turns warm, bitter, optimistic, cynical and deeply, profoundly human.
Pleasance Courtyard, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Andrew Leask]

Marriage (Ditto Productions in association with Comedians' Theatre Company and DLT)
I really wanted to love this play, but in the end I only sort of liked it. As a fan of Pappy's for years, I know Ben Clark can write and perform great comedy, and there are certainly flashes of genuinely brilliant humour within the play, especially the scenes involving four suitors all vying for the hand of the same girl. Unfortunately, those are mixed in with some comic missteps - like the bewilderingly awful accent of matchmaker Fanny - and with moments of dark introspection that don't fit the madcap tone of the majority of the play. Ultimately this plays like a bunch of good sketches, stitched together with a couple of stinkers and some inappropriate juxtaposition.
Assembly George Square Studios, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 2/5 | [Andrew Leask]

My Name is... (Tamasha)
'My Name Is...' is an outstanding play that eloquently discusses the impending Muslim threat in Brit...hang on a minute, is this a racist play? Not quite, but it's certainly an unforgiving look into how the beliefs of Muslim immigrants can clash against incompatible "British values". The acting is superb, and it's compelling to watch the nuances of the disparate cultures crackle against each other as the tension rises. Although the subtleties of the play's complex themes become lost in the chaos of the plot, the play manages to intelligently break down issues that are often forgotten when the country is following a naive policy of integration. This is an excellent and timely piece of new writing.
Northern Stage at Summerhall, until 31 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Robert Stevens]

If I Were Me (Antler Theatre)
Phillip is suffering with a lack of confidence, feels lost in life, and as though he is being pushed into the background. Antler Theatre's Fringe return is a story about finding yourself, however, I felt a bit lost myself by the time it reached its conclusion. The narrative plays alongside distinctive choreographed sequences, which look wonderfully cinematic and help us to empathise with out protagonist's situation; plus, there were some lovely games and devised ideas, such as the audience playfully throwing balls at actors. However, I ended up feeling these elements of staging were being used to mask the lack of a clear story. The motifs, slightly abstract set, and visual style employed by this company are certainly memorable, but I felt a little deflated and in need of more resolution from the narrative at the end.
Underbelly Cowgate, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 3/5 | [Stephanie Withers]

One Day When We Were Young by Nick Payne (Fundamental Theatre Project)
A story of two lovers, told over three separate moments in time, this is an honest and heartfelt look into the lives of two people and how their relationship grows and evolves. There's a certain point in the play where a good percentage of the audience was in tears, which is a testament to the superb actors, Valorie Curry and Sam Underwood. Although the story can sometimes feel laboured and slow, the raw emotion and subtle comedy is always there to entice you back. The restricted space is used cleverly and the on-stage changeovers are beautifully choreographed to remind the audience of passing time. A story of love and heartbreak, spanning WW2 to the invention of the electronic bottle opener.
Assembly George Square Gardens, until 31 Aug.
tw rating 3/5 | [Bethan Highgate-Betts]

What I Learned From Johnny Bevan (Luke Wright)
Forced to review arts festival 'Urbania', a journalist considers how emotion and authenticity have been prostituted, as he looks back at his formative university years. This is a gripping monologue, narrated in a mix of storytelling and poetry, and is absolutely dripping with character. Luke Wright's exceptionally passionate performance feels too symbolic at first, but quickly evolves into an expressive interplay of student politics and pints down the pub. The character of Johnny, a failed working class hero, is the focal point of the play, to the extent that narrator Nick feels marginalised as an observer - simply someone to bounce the better jokes off. However, this hour of theatre is sure to spark at least one mid-life crisis.
Summerhall, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Robert Stevens]

Where Do Little Birds Go? (Duckdown Theatre / HeavyWeather Theatre)
"A thousand lights will flicker all around," croons Lucy Fuller on her nightclub podium. We want to believe her, but don't all show-tunes (the play's title included) seem to wince at a repressed sadness? Her grin is too wide; this is a reluctant sob story, where the scene of a death comes gabbled in a single, strangulated breath. Actress Jessica Butcher animates this sparse script, where the only truths lie in motion, her playful waltz degenerating into a nauseous spinning. The breathtaking ending rejects all the doom in a way that's sugar-free, just as airless as everything before it. We would expect no more from Lucy, who is all hard, shiny sequins ("I'm a biter"). I left still holding my breath slightly.
Underbelly, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Sarah Murphy]

The Very Grey Matter Of Edward Blank (Familia de la Noche)
We're told Edward Blank is the hero of this story, although hero may be too strong a word. An audio typist, Edward never leaves his flat, but he's not lonely, as his imaginary friends are there to keep him company. The four cartoonish, freakish characters are his constant source of entertainment, and ours too. Familia de la Noche have created something extraordinary here, with every element fitting perfectly. Their designer is to be highly commended: from the paintbox-bright costumes to the set, where every cupboard holds a surprise. The actors are consistently brilliant, humorous or horrifying as Edward's mental state changes. A look at just how colourful the dark parts of our minds can be, this nightmarish fantasy might keep you up past your bedtime.
Assembly Roxy, until 31 Aug.
tw rating 5/5 | [Gemma Scott]

Fake It Till You Make It (Bryony Kimmings Ltd, Soho Theatre and Avalon Productions)
A powerful, raw and important piece of drama; Bryony Kimmings and her partner Tim (who has no prior performance experience) tell a modern love story - their own, detailing Tim's real battle with clinical depression. This piece tackles the stigma surrounding mental health, and the view that men can't talk about their feelings. Bryony's boldness, teamed with Tim's shyness, is beautiful; it's a privilege to be allowed entry into this sensitive place. With the ability to laugh at themselves the pair tell this story through humour, song, dance and interviews. Their open vulnerability is moving, brave and evidently cathartic for them both. If you're lucky enough to have a ticket, make sure you take some tissues!
Traverse Theatre, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 5/5 / [Stephanie Withers]

Women's Hour (Sh!t Theatre)
What does it mean to be a woman in a country where tampons are a luxury item but razors are not? Sh!t Theatre have one hour in which to deconstruct the way women are presented by the media, wielding comedy like a hammer against the ridiculous constructs and constraints that are associated with womanhood. Taking the format of BBC4's 'Women's Hour', the show looks at what it means to be a woman today and in doing so makes some uncomfortable findings. Commissioned for the Camden People's Theatre's 'Calm Down, Dear' festival of feminist theatre, 'Women's Hour' obliterates inequalities with logic and laughs. Visual, physical, frantically funny and unapologetically forceful, this show isn't just a must see, attendance should be compulsory.
Summerhall, until 30 Aug.
tw rating 5/5 | [Bethan Highgate-Betts]

Roughs (For Radio) (Monkfish Theatre)
To be led, blindfolded, into a room, then seated amid the sharp hiss of static, strangled voices and discordant music is a profoundly disorientating experience. We are left isolated, alone in the dark, to enjoy two of Samuel Beckett's less well known works; voices and sounds assault our ears, disquieting and compelling in equal measure. The short plays themselves bear the hallmarks of classic Beckett - bleakness of tone, crudity and sophistication juxtaposed – and are enhanced profoundly by the absence of vision. At the end we walked, blinking, into a dimly lit room, seeming bright by comparison, and it was as if we had endured some elemental experience alone, which had somehow brought us together.
C nova, until 31 Aug.
tw rating 5/5 | [Andrew Leask]

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