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Tatterdemalion at Edinburgh Fringe

August 28, 2015

ArtsTheatre | by Harry Seymour


An hour of mime can seem daunting at first – but Tatterdemalion keeps you stuck, through his wit and charm – you become glued to every action, and sensitive to every movement and sound. Fusing magic, puppetry and mime all together, makes for an infectious show. The protagonist, who arrives wearing a fez and dress, rolls through the show by pulling props from a trunk that assist in making the show heartfelt through its absurdity and comical pleasance. It’s hard not to feel a likeable pity for the dim-witted character.

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Half way through things begin to turn a little dark with the emergence of spirits and skulls, but it always remains charming. “Removing the ability to talk forces you to be far more creative with your body and expressions. I love physical theatre and pushing my own physicality. I also seem to have a predilection for avant-garde theatre styles; I find them exciting”, Tatterdemalion told Candid Magazine. Audience involvement sees people getting married, burying their children and witnessing rush hour tube inspectors at their worst. “I am self-taught, I studied under a couple of clown teachers such as Dr Brown, Red Bastard and Eric Le Bont for a few weeks here and there but other than that I am training by doing. My mime comes through the desperation of the character, he can’t talk so he has to invent settings and props”, he told us.

“The audience can expect to laugh but hopefully also experience a range of emotions including sadness and empathy, I hope to create a show that makes people feel like they have all been on a journey with me. Come with an open mind and an open heart and leave buzzing”. The show is a mixture of empathy and stupidity, but leaves you feeling a sort of joy at the absurd that seems child-like in its innocence.

The beauty if the show is in how the craft of mime appears so fluid, natural and easy by Tatterdemalion -and how at ease you instantly feel around the character. It’s possible to think you completely know and understand them without any words being exchanged, and thats the real magic. Candid would give it four stars.

By Victoria Copeland

Tatterdemalion at Assembly Roxy at Edinburgh Fringe until 31st August 2015