Edinburgh 2013: Dark Vanilla Jungle - Philip Ridley's latest meditation on misery starring Game of Thrones' Gemma Whelan
Tuesday 13 August 2013
One of these days, pigs might fly and Philip Ridley will write a play full of joy, laughter and sparkling merriment. Meanwhile, he follows the dark and murky byways of lives that have gone lyrically wrong in language that lacerates any vestigial sense of well-being and “all’s right with the world” in an audience.
His latest report of misery on the dysfunctional front line is the confessional, hysterical testimony of Andrea who, abandoned by her own parents in Croydon and abducted as a schoolgirl sex slave, throws herself at a wounded soldier and loses her baby in a dark and dangerous forest.
What makes the story so riveting – as well as deeply depressing – is the extraordinary performance of Gemma Whelan (Yara Greyjoy in Games of Thrones on television), who yammers away for 75 minutes without drawing breath or dropping a syllable.
She plays the audience on three sides like an incantatory harpy, pleading for attention, unravelling her story in an explanatory yowl, as if addressing a convention of doctors and psychoanalysts.
The disastrous parents, the pick up at the party, the drugged sex orgy, the discovery of her pimping boyfriend’s family, the assault on the soldier in a hospital; all is despatched in vivid and audacious detail. This is an all too familiar case history of a young girl with nothing to give but love and nowhere to find it.
To 26 Aug (0131 556 6550)
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Snoop Dogg and Jared Leto buy a stake in Reddit as A-list invests $50m
- 2 Prince held a Facebook Q&A and this is the only question he answered
- 3 Car tax disc changes: Two days to go - and they affect you much more than just not displaying a piece of paper
- 4 Now we know whose fault it is if you end up being murdered in Thailand
- 5 35,000 walrus gather ashore on north-west Alaska beach 'for a rest'
Ed Sheeran dedicates song to David Cameron
Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon
Glastonbury 2015 registration: How to get tickets for next year's festival
Kylie Minogue Kiss Me Once tour, London O2 - review: Pop princess still reigns supreme
Miranda Hart and Sarah Millican named highest-selling female comedians
Exclusive: 'Putin's Russia has been my biggest regret,' says Nato's outgoing Secretary General
The Osborne Ultimatum: Chancellor’s benefits freeze bombshell will affect ten million households
There’s no excuse for Dave Lee Travis’s behaviour, but we need to keep a sense of proportion
Should gay sex be illegal? 16% of Britons think so
Mark Reckless becomes second Tory MP to defect to Ukip in a month
Benefits 'smart cards' plan revealed by Iain Duncan Smith to stop claimants spending welfare money on alcohol
- < Previous
- Next >