Saturday, 22 August 2015

Edfest Day 17: Broken Biscuits and Streaky Face Paint

I've seen a lot of face-painted performers since I arrived at the fringe and one thing is consistent - the pristine condition of the clown make up will last all of 10 minutes before slipping stubbornly off the face. You'd think an essential ingredient of stage make up would be durability in intense heat. Maybe they're just using cheap stuff? They really do look like the stereotypical tragic clowns. 
I've mostly been at forest fringe again today. I discovered that,  for unforseen circumstances,  they'll have to move out of the biscuit factory, which already was a substitute venue for the original. I wonder where Scottee and his mad cafe club will wind up? I hope they find somewhere more accessible.

I popped into "Quizoola" which ran from 3pm - 9pm and involved two clowns answering questions for 6 hours. Audience members were not expected to sit there for the entire 6hrs,  however, they can come and go as they please. It's an interesting experiment.  There are parts that are funny, parts that offer insight into these people's lives and thoughts and parts that are just a bit dull. For a while it seemed that some character work was breaking through,  which they speculated had been "bad material" due to the fact they'd veered away from the normal questions (of which there are a big stack - at least 100 pages).

After Forest Fringe, I headed to dancebase in Grassmarket for a physical theatre piece called "Oog". This is a solo performance from Al Seed. On his website it states "The focus [...] is the creation of visually striking physical theatre" and it certainly is that. As you walk into the space you can't help but admire the scene. A figure sits in a chair, downstage centre, hunched down into a trench coat with an over sized collar. Upstage, off-centre, a ladder leads up into a metal tube, a bright light beams down through the tube. This seems to be the exit. The exit from the locked cellar which we are told is the setting, or the exit from the shell shocked soldiers tortured mind? 
The lighting was incredibly striking for this piece as was the costume and nightmarish clown make up. The staccato movement was insect like and reminded me at one point of stop animation. Again, very visually rich.
.... His clown makeup still smudged and smeared though.
It always does.  

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