Ben Target: Lorenzo
Stand-up comedian Ben Target spent much of lockdown looking after his adopted uncle Lorenzo Wong. His gorgeous and, at points, dark and wicked show Lorenzo in Summerhall’s Anatomy Lecture Theatre is his tribute to this wonderful character and the art and graft of caring.
Lorenzo was an ergonomic designer and, when Target was a child, this mischievous duo would indulge in daft inventive times they called “silly o’clock”. Target’s account of Lorenzo’s family history and later years would be engaging enough without visual embellishment but the his workbench stage set is a thing of wonder with delightful micro props plucked from secret compartments. There is also balletic use of toilet paper and delicious gallows humour which initially makes his carer’s role sound fun. But eventually the full drudge, indignity, conflict and sadness of the situation has to come out.
Gunter plays out in the same space as an explosive gig theatre retelling of an early 17thcentury witch trial. Dressed in sporty strips, Julia Grogan, Norah Lopez-Holden, Hannah Jarrett-Scott and Lydia Higman relate the strange case of Anne Gunter whose father, local bigwig Brian Gunter, goes on the offensive when he is called out for the killing of two local boys by their mother Elizabeth, discrediting her just indictment with the counter-accusation that she is bewitching his daughter. And thus another victim is embroiled in the whole sordid affair.
What If They Ate the Baby
The Space on the Mile
New York duo Xhloe & Natasha have revived last year’s hit Fringe debut gem And Then The Rodeo Burned Down and brought a new show, What If They Ate the Baby? to theSpace on the Mile, applying their distinctive absurdist clowning style to another classic American icon – the 50s housewife with her starched apron and mod cons.
The duo present as punk Stepford Wives Shirley and Dotty – hairs are out of place and their swing dresses are splashed with lurid green but initially the image of the domestic goddess must be preserved and the pair engage in passive aggressive competition with an undercurrent of desperation. The easy listening soundtrack is replaced by 21stcentury dance tracks and hip-hop as their rehearsed exchanges start to break down, the persistent knocking at the door further unsettles their fragile, claustrophobic world and it all gets very messy.