The Monster in the Hall, Traverse Theatre
Monday 15 August 2011
David Greig's fizzing urban fairy tale of a teenage girl, her sick Hell's Angel father, his metaphorical motorbike in the hall... and big Agnetha from Trondheim is an imaginative synthesis of Beauty and the Beast, pop songs, heavy metal, and rapid-fire acting. The small cast use a jumbled style of computer games and Avatar-style heroics, with sex and social services thrown in.
Guy Hollands's brilliant and energetic production for the Glasgow Citizens' touring company, is galvanised by Gemma McElhinney as 16 year-old Duck Macatarsney, a genuine princess with the appeal of a new Romola Garai, and who sings beautifully, too. Duck writes before work, channelling the loss of her mother, and her crush on her drama class pal, Lawrence (David Carlyle), whose credibility as a heterosexual Lothario has been undermined by his interest in zany costumes. Ducks helps him tackle this problem.
The music and sound design of Nigel Dunn and Stephen Wright creates a world beyond life in Kirkcaldy, where Duck is a supermarket check-out girl in Asda, and where Beth Marshall's social worker doubles as a troll-like avenger who quells the chimaera coming out of the fires of Tarsus. Delightful.
In rep to 28 August (0131 228 1404)
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