Skip to main content

G.B.H. Or The Girl, The Boy And The Hag

Oran Mor, Glasgow
4 stars
An occasional criticism of Oran Mor’s A Play, A Pie And A Pint series of lunchtime theatre has been its material’s lack of ambition. There’s no danger of that in the literary debut of visual artist Adrian Wiszniewski, who not only morphs two fantastical myths into the same universe, but tells them via the presence of 25 members of the Scottish Philharmonic Orchestra, squeezed into the venue’s bijou floor-space under the command of composer Gordon Rigby.

Oran Mor’s subterranean confines are subsequently recast as The Glade nightclub, where drop-dead gorgeous Giselle and her Goth mates go wild. One night after closing time, our heroine stumbles on handsome Galahad, who’s been left for dead by the local rats. With a shapeshifting Hag also fancying her chances, Giselle is led on a breathless voyage, where she encounters unicorns, talking snakes and quite possibly true love.

Told by David Anderson as a louche nightclub raconteur, and accompanied by original slides to illustrate his yarn, Wiszniewski’s comic book reimagining is epic in both scope and execution. With Giselle herself immortalised as ‘a girl who looks just as good in black and white as she does in colour,’ what’s effectively a glorious old-fashioned romance recalls the contemporary sass of Buffy The Vampire Slayer.

Here too, a beautiful heroine warred against dark forces inbetween hanging out in an underground dive frequented by serious types clad in dark clothes, and was sometimes saved by a handsome stranger. Rigby’s Glasgow pastoral baroque is the star here, though, a delicious accompaniment to the beginning of a great adventure that can only get bigger.

Sponsored by Zoom

The Herald, February 20th 2007

ends

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Peter Brook – The Prisoner

Peter Brook is no stranger to Scotland, ever since the guru of European and world theatre first brought his nine-hour epic, The Mahabharata, to Glasgow in 1988. That was at the city’s old transport museum, which by 1990 had become Tramway, the still-functioning permanent venue that opened up Glasgow and Scotland as a major channel for international theatre in a way that had previously only been on offer at Edinburgh International Festival.
Brook and his Paris-based Theatre des Bouffes du Nord company’s relationship with Tramway saw him bring his productions of La Tragedie de Carmen, La Tempete, Pellease et Mellisande, The Man Who…, and Oh Les Beaux Jours – the French version of Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days – to Glasgow.
Thirty years on from The Mahabharata, Brook comes to EIF with another piece of pan-global theatre as part of a residency by Theatre des Bouffes du Nord, which Brook has led since he decamped to Paris from London in the early 1970s. The current Edinburgh residency has alr…

Suzy Glass – Message from the Skies

Freedom of movement matters to Suzy Glass, the arts and events producer currently overseeing the second edition of Message from the Skies.This animated literary derive around the city forms part of this year’s Edinburgh’s Hogmanay programme, and runs right through till Burns’ Night. Glass’ concerns are inherent in the event itself, which has commissioned six writers from different disciplines and experiences to each pen a love letter to Europe. Each writer has then paired up with a composer and visual artist or film-maker, with the results of each collaboration projected in monumental fashion on the walls of one of half a dozen of the capital’s most iconic buildings.
With venues stretching from the south side of Edinburgh to Leith, and with one city centre stop requiring a walk up Calton Hill, there is considerable legwork required to complete the circuit. It shouldn’t be considered a race, however, and audiences are free to move between venues at their leisure, visiting each site on d…

Romeo And Juliet - Shakespeare's Globe Comes to Glasgow

Open-air Shakepeares are a summer-time perennial of the theatre calendar, attracting picnicking audiences as much as midges. More often than not, such romps through the grass are frothy, heritage industry affairs designed to be accompanied by strawberries and cream and not to be taken too seriously. Shakespeare’s Globe theatre company look set to change such perceptions when they open their outdoor tour of Romeo And Juliet in Glasgow next week as part of the West End festival.

For the two young actors taking the title roles of the doomed lovers, it will also be something of a homecoming. Richard Madden and Ellie Piercy both studied in Glasgow prior to turning professional. Indeed, Madden has yet to graduate from the acting course at RSAMD, and, as well as facing the pressures of playing such a meaty role in close proximity to the audience, will have the added anxiety of being assessed and graded by his tutors.

“This is the end of my third year,” says Madden following a Saturday mornin…