The Secret Wives of Andy Williams

Edinburgh Festival Fringe Scotsman review (theatre): The Secret Wives of Andy Williams at Underbelly, Cowgate (Venue 61). Review by Sally Scott

There are some plays that are hard-hitting and provocative, that will leave you moved or haunted by them for days after, and there are others that are simply great fun for an hour. This is one of the latter. Set in a nunnery in 1969, it’s as cosy and entertaining as a Saturday night in watching something bright and bubbly on the telly.

Young nun Caitlin, like a new girl at boarding school, deals with making friends, being separated from the love of her life (at least, the one before she found God) and the acerbic put-downs of queen bee Enid.

Written by Sadie Hasler, who also gives a compelling performance as the conflicted Sister Mabel Matthew – the stoic mentor of the younger women – it’s an unabashed and nostalgic celebration of all things “nice”. This includes crooner of the time Andy Williams. Whether you can still be a good nun and in love with a man with glowing white teeth and a perma-tan is the source of some light conflict. But in what ends up being a pretty good advert for finding God, it is the deeper acts of compassion and friendship that the play is really all about.

Until 24 August. Today 3:30pm

Originally published in The Scotsman

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