The World's Wife, Assembly Rooms @ George Street, Edinburgh

Michael Coveney
Monday 17 August 2009 00:00 BST

According to the Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy, Medusa was wrongly abandoned, the Kray brothers were suffragist sisters and Freud's wife knew everything the old man didn't about the one-eyed little chap down below.

Linda Marlowe planned her show based on Duffy's brilliant volume of feminist avengers long before the poet was revealed as the new laureate; the material fits perfectly with her track record of vital, vociferous and sexy dames of myth and modern legend.

Here, we have a gallery of classical heroines – Salome, Medusa, Penelope, Circe and Eurydice – given new lives alongside the hilariously imagined spouses of the great and not so good.

Midas had a heart of gold and a warm touch, but was no fun to live with. Faust's big secret was that he had no soul to sell in the first place. And if Freud had bothered to ask, women would have told him that penis envy was his problem, not theirs.

Marlowe delivers the poems with tremendous verve and grace, dressing her choreography of characters in scarves, shawls and boots littered around the stage. It's a remarkable solo performance, beautifully directed by Di Sherlock, and a genuine highlight of the Festival Fringe so far.

To 31 August, not 19 (0131-623 3030)

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in