Skip to main content

The End of Eddy

The Studio
Four stars

A disclaimer of sorts opens Pamela Carter’s loose-knit adaptation of French nouveau enfant terrible Édouard Louis’ autobiographical novel, which caused a sensation when it was published when Louis was just twenty-one. This is delivered by Alex Austin and Kwaku Mills, the two tracksuit-bottom and t-shirted young actors who tell young Eddy’s story as well as play all other parts by way of video footage on the four TV screens that line the front of the stage.

This prologue sets out its store regarding what, exactly, the show’s young audiences will and won’t see over the next ninety minutes of Stewart Laing’s co-production between his Untitled Projects company and young people’s auteurs Unicorn Theatre. This is a neat and less discomforting way into Louis’ story, about how a small-town boy from a working-class background was brutalised for being different, only to take the leap into a world where he can be anyone he wants.

On one level, Louis’ tale of reinvention and transcendence through art is as familiar as Billy Elliot. In the telling, however, Carter, Laing and an essential technical and design team body-swerve sentiment and angst for something more playful. As Austin and Mills tag-team the narrative, what appears onscreen becomes projection in every way, with Eddy’s family depicted as Viz-like cartoon characters against a vivid pink or yellow background.

Carter’s script is always conscious of its literary roots, at times resembling a street-smart lit-crit show for aspirational teens. It also reimagines its source material as Eddy reimagines himself. One of the show’s most touching moments is when Eddy and his father bond over Celine Dion on the car radio. When Eddy shakes off his hand-me-down machismo by way of a Zen shedding of skin, as his past life goes up in flames, he takes on the world. 

The Herald, August 23rd 2018 



Popular posts from this blog

Clybourne Park

Adam Smith Theatre, Kirkcaldy Four Stars
It’s a case of whoops, there goes the neighbourhood twice over in Rapture Theatre’s revival of Bruce Norris’ Pulitzer Prize-winning play, which opens in 1959 in the same Chicago suburb where Lorraine Hansberry’s drama, A Raisin in the Sun, which appeared that year, is set. Here, Robin Kingsland’s Russ and his wife Bev, played by Jackie Morrison, are preparing to move out of their now almost empty des-res following a family tragedy.
Unknown to them, the bargain basement price tag has enabled a black family to move in, with Jack Lord’s uptight Karl a self-appointed spokesperson for the entire ‘hood. Russ and Bev’s black maid Francine (Adelaide Obeng) and her husband Albert (Vinta Morgan), meanwhile, bear witness to a barrage of everyday racism. Fast forward half a century, and a white family are trying to buy the same house, albeit with a heap of proposed changes which the black couple representing the block’s now much more diverse community aren’t…

Michael Rother - Sterntaler at 40

"There's so much to do," says an uncharacteristically flustered Michael Rother. The normally unflappably beatific German guitarist, composer and former member of Neu! and Harmonia, who also had a stint in a nascent Kraftwerk, is packing for live dates in Russia and the UK, including this weekend's show at the Queen Margaret Union in Glasgow.
"It has always been my choice to take care of these things myself and not have a manager," he says. "Somehow for me the independent aspect of doing things is really important, but it has its disadvantages."
As well as playing selections from Neu! and Harmonia, the trio he formed with Dieter Moebius and Hans Joachim Roedelius of Cluster, Rother's Glasgow date will see him play a fortieth anniversary rendering of his second solo album, Sterntaler, in full. Rother will be accompanied by guitarist Franz Bargmann and drummer Hans Lampe, the latter of whose musical involvement with Rother dates back to Neu! days, …

Kieran Hurley – Mouthpiece

Things have changed since Kieran Hurley first began writing the play that would become Mouthpiece, which opens at the Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh this weekend. At the time, Hurley was, in his own words, “quite new on the scene.” As a writer and performer, he had already scored hits with Beats and Chalk Farm, two pieces that put him on the map with a new generation of theatre-makers steeped in an equally new wave of grassroots opposition that drew from the iconography of revolutions past. Where Beats looked at the politicisation of 1990s club culture, Chalk Farm, co-written with AJ Taudevin, focused on a teenage boy caught up in the 2011 London riots.
More plays followed. Some, like Heads Up used the same solo story-telling aesthetic to look at an everyday apocalypse. More recently, Square Go, written with Gary McNair, dissected toxic masculinity through a school playground fight.
All the while as Hurley developed as a writer, from new kid on the block to established provocateur, this…