What do the grey stars mean? This year, as an experiment, we're re-publishing selected reviews from earlier runs of the same show – for example, if we reviewed the same production at last year's Edinburgh Fringe. Find out more.

When The Sea Swallows Us Whole

3 stars

A cliffside town on the brink of literal collapse is the setting for When The Sea Swallows Us Whole - a production that is engaging and baffling by turns. The story follows Mila’s inner and outer reactions after the arrival of city girl Posy awakens unfamiliar feelings in her. But the fate of the town, and her long-time friendship with nervy Doll, place emotional and metaphysical obstacles in her path to self-acceptance.

Review by Annie Percik published on Saturday 8 February | Read more

What the Dolls Saw

4 stars

This all-female horror story is deliciously spine-tingling, yet riven through with comedy, too. The tale surrounds a family - a mother, three daughters, and a mysterious friend - who re-unite for the first time in years after their father’s funeral. The father was a doll-maker, there’s an ominous locked workshop… and it goes without saying that a secret’s buried somewhere in the family’s past.

Review by Richard Stamp published on Saturday 8 February | Read more

From The Heart Of The Sea

4 stars

In an age of global mobility, what does it mean to be “home”? It’s a question that’s asked a lot these days - but never quite in the way that Tal Naveh’s chosen for this stylish, evocative show. Her story stars three women, and a big pile of sand: a versatile and malleable medium, which the performers shape and play with throughout their hour on stage. Sometimes they use it as a literal sand-pit, sometimes they shape it like tufts of meringue, yet later, under a colder light, it might be the dust of the tomb.

Review by Richard Stamp published on Thursday 6 February | Read more

Santi & Naz

3 stars

August 1947. Long-awaited independence for India and Pakistan, and the end of British rule. But it wasn’t a cause of celebration for everyone: there were many deaths, and mass migration ripped friends and families apart as people struggled to find where they belonged in a changing world. Santi & Naz is the story of two friends growing up in an Indian village in the 1940s, initially unaware of the events that will soon change their lives forever; it’s a small and intensely personal tale, which effectively conveys the confusion and suffering caused by global events.

Review by Annie Percik published on Friday 31 January | Read more

The Wild Unfeeling World

4 stars (previous review)

Billed as an ‘unreliable retelling of Moby Dick’, The Wild Unfeeling World is an intimate show, both in terms of its venue and the brittle feelings it explores. Performing in a wood-lined room reminiscent of a ship’s hold, Casey Jay Andrews lays bare her thoughts about the delicacy of human connections – and the crippling fear that asking for help will unduly burden those we reach out to. In truth it owes very little to Herman Melville: there are some amusing references to events and characters from his novel, but the parallels are too superficial to bear much scrutiny.

Review by Richard Stamp originally published at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2019 | Read more