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  • Writer's pictureViolet Mackintosh

Corpsing 3* (Edinburgh Fringe Review)

New Celts Productions and Red Rabbit Theatre

The Space - Jenner Theatre

Know Before You Go: Be prepared to contemplate mortality, murder and euthanasia

When a young Elliott Hubble, fresh from the city, travels up to Scotland to take over his late grandfather’s funeral business he discovers more than he wanted to know about why they have quite so many clients. Hubble must now decide whether he will expose the wrongdoings of his business or continue the escapades, getting more and more wound up in questionable activities as he does so. Corpsing is an entertaining dark comedy with an intriguing concept and impressive delivery.

"Corpsing is an entertaining dark comedy with an intriguing concept and impressive delivery."

Corpsing - New Celts Productions and Red Rabbit Theatre

There was no weak link in the acting trio but there was a stand-out performance from Anya Borrows as the innocent, chirpy auditor masking a traumatic past and vengeful outlook. The acting certainly made up for any places where the plot was a little rough around the edges.

On the surface, this play is a mindless farce with obvious gags but there is something more here. About halfway through there is a revelation that brings the controversial topic of euthanasia to the table. This slow contemplative section was a break from the slapstick comedy and gave the play real depth.

However, this part became a little too sombre because the opening was just not as amusing as it should have been. If the audience really had been ‘corpsing’ with laughter, this grave discussion would have hit home so much harder. It is also worth asking whether this was the year to produce a play about the untimely death of the elderly after the 18 months we have all just lived through. A few more laughs might well have been enough to redeem the darker side of the play.

"Corpsing would be a valuable start to any fringe day"

Having said that, Corpsing certainly has its moments, especially when bodies are being dragged across the stage and no one really knows what will happen! The plot twists were unexpected and well-executed. This production would be a good start to any fringe day.


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