Edinburgh Festival: Adam Hess


Adam Hess: Salamon

Adam Hess talks very fast. So fast that I am still, more than 12 hours later, trying to unravel some of the things he said.  With Adam Hess you basically get two shows in one.  That is how fast the man talks.  It’s amazing.

For a while I have followed Adam Hess on Twitter.  Initially not even realising he was a comedian.  I just thought he was a funny chap.  When I saw he was going to be at Edinburgh I hoped to get to see his show.

Adam is a lot younger than I thought he would be.  And as his show goes on he seems to get more youthful.  Or perhaps there is just a correlation between how young someone looks and the amount of enthusiasm they ooze.

His show is titled Salmon.  I have no idea why.  Salmon was never mentioned once.  He spoke of being newly single.  The fact he has a single mattress on a double bed frame.  That he grew up in a flat so he thought Santa came out the tap.  His love of Polly Pocket toys.  Being electrocuted at an arcade in Spain.  Rescuing a falling scotch egg.  The tales go on and on.  Not sure if any of these stories were true.  He did say at the beginning they were but then that he admitted he does normally bend the truth in his show.

He dragged a chap from the front row onto the stage and put him in a Adam Hess mask to read out some observations.  I can’t remember why but it made a lot sense at the time.  Adam put a cardboard square mask on with the word SOCIETY on it.  Whilst playing the bongos.  Can’t decide whether this was more funny or the true excitement he had when he asked the chap who had come on stage what he did for a living.  The words of ‘film director’ came the reply.  Adam Hess looked like Santa had finally come out the tap.

Go see this show.  You’ll be sorry if you don’t.

Adam Hess: Salamon is on at 17:20 at the Hive until 31 August.  Tickets are £5

Sarah Southern


Edinburgh Festival: Balletronic



Balletronic are a Havana based dance group.  Their show is high energy with a mix of traditional en pointe ballet through to much more contemporary movement.  Supported by an 11 piece band, live singer and colourful costumes this show almost makes you want to get up and dance yourself.

The female principal is the constant throughout the many pieces that make up the performance.  She begins in an electric blue tutu and dances a passionate, loving routine with her male partner and a white violin.  She returns in the next piece in a equally electric blue dress.  As other dancers change costumes and characters she remains the same throughout.

The main theme seems to be unsolved love and attraction.  One scene sees dancers coming from both sides of the stage be being held back on long pieces of ribbon.  They come to each other and try and embrace.  They might be able to get close or they are pulled away from each other.  The dancers added tension to the ribbon, using it to balance themselves as they moved and contoured their bodies.  It was an effective and beautiful sight.

The live band were a brilliant addition.  The lead fiddler took to centre stage on a couple of occasions much to the delight of the audience.  As did the female vocalist.

As you think the performance is over and the cast have taken their bow some great pop music kicks in with some Daft Punk and Jamiroquai.  The cast kept dancing and looked as though they were having the times of their lives.  You just couldn’t help but smile.

This show is likely to be raved about long after the Edinburgh Festival closes.  Get in and see it now.  It is a real treat.

Balletronic are on at 21:30 until 31 August at the Grand, Pleasance Courtyard.  Tickets are £12.50.

Sarah Southern

It’s been a while

It has been a while, I know.  I had been reviewing all the shows I went to see and loving doing so.  But then I started an MA and had so many words to write that the pleasure of writing disappeared somewhat.  Then I started a new job and wasn’t going to the theatre as much so had nothing to write about.  What terrible excuses but reasons nonetheless.

Lately, I have been missing the short missives that I wrote.  So, here I am now, laptop at the ready, at the Edinburgh Festival to get me back on track.  Only here for a few days but I am going to try and cram in as many shows as time and budget will allow.

I can’t remember the last time I at the Festival but I used to come a lot with family and friends.  Growing up near the Borders meant a trip to Edinburgh was a regular jaunt.  It’s a city I know well and have huge affection for.

The most memorable visit to the Festival being when my best pal Laura and I came in 1998 post A Level results for a long weekend.  Lacking in funds we choose to camp just outside the city and taking the bus to Princes Street every night to see some shows and then go onto to nightclubs.  We’d return about 7am the next morning looking a little bedraggled as the families on the campsite were giving their kids breakfast.  What a sight we must have been.  We saw so many shows but the only one I can remember was a drum ‘n’ bass version of The Tempest.  It was epic.

Sarah Southern

A Door in the Wall


A few Friday’s ago my friend arranged for us to go to what I thought was a quiz night.  But a really fancy quiz night.  Turned out I’d not quite read the email right and we were all off to a murder mystery/treasure hunt affair called A Diplomatic Corpse organised by the brilliant A Door in the Wall.

Operating out of the Paudaguay Embassy you are invited to help the Embassy staff solve a murder.  They are happy you’ve come to help them out and provide all the information you’ll need to start the hunt to solve the crime.  After a quick briefing by some chap in a suit we raced round the street of Kings Cross trying to find all the clues (Google maps fired up, of course).

If you’re not sure if you have competitive friends this will certainly let you know.   We were obsessed about the quickest routes between clues and made every situation way more complicated by thinking everything was way less obvious than it was.  But all still very hilarious.  Along the way you come across characters who will assist you with further clues or just hold you up.  One real highlight was a quick game of the national sport of Pausaguay, AGONI!  Very amusing.

You have about 2 hours to find all the clues and then return to the Embassy to help decide who you think committed the murder.  It’s about now that you realise you missed a whole load of stuff and that maybe you’d not quite understood what the main aim of the evening was.  It wasn’t an orienteering task but actually a challenge to work out a riddle!

It is a brilliant night out and you will laugh so much as parts of it are so daft.  I would definitely go to the next one by A Door in the Wall as it was so well crafted and worked so perfectly.

The Diplomatic Corpse mystery will be waiting to be solved until 15 June.  Get your tickets booked now!

Sarah Southern








H Club

Last night I headed to the least exclusive members club in town: H Club.  It is the latest comedy showing from Holly Burn.  Holly has been doing  great stand up for the last few years – including a show in her own home!  I have been to a 3 or 4 shows over the years and always found them a great night out.  Holly always pushes the boundaries and isn’t scared to try new things out.   The H Club is on for another month at the Leicester Square Theatre so do go and see it.  Although if you do maybe avoid the front row!!

Do take a read of the Guardian’s review