Edinburgh Festival Fringe children’s show review: Eejits and Hissy Fits, reviewed by The Scotsman’s Sally Stott.
There are rows of empty seats, but only because the parents and kids are all sitting at the front on the floor, enthralled by natural storyteller Fiona Herbert’s subversive twist on traditional fairy tales and their underlying messages. There are, she explains, a lot of “eejits” out there, and whether they’re giants threatening those that are smaller than themselves, or a king trying to find a “delicate” woman to marry his son off to, they’re not to be tolerated.
Through three cleverly constructed stories – The Wee B and the Pea, The Tale of Two Giants and Washadish – resilience and cunning triumph over aggression, stupidity and the allure of physical beauty. In this world, one that also draws upon Celtic legend, Scottish folk tales and Edinburgh’s gothic landscape, there’s no place for “hissy fits” when you can be getting what you want using wit and intelligence.
It’s a great message that effectively undermines docile princesses and male bullies, delivered with warmth and charm.
Some simple but unusual musical instruments enhance the rich imagery, and while it’s a small-scale piece of deliberately understated theatre, both the young audience and their accompanying adults are thoroughly engaged by the deceptively simple act of one woman telling great stories.
Scottish Storytelling Centre (Venue 30a) until 23 August / listings
Published in The Scotsman on 10 August 2015
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