Theatre review: The Effects of Solitude
Theatre review: The Effects of Solitude

Edinburgh Festival Fringe theatre review: The Effects of Solitude, reviewed by The Scotsman’s Billy Barrett ★★ The physical and psychological impact of social isolation comes under the microscope in this solo show about a scientific research project. Alex – played by writer Noni Townsend – submits to an ethically dubious experiment in which participants are …

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Edinburgh Festival

Edinburgh Festival Fringe theatre review: The Effects of Solitude, reviewed by The Scotsman’s Billy Barrett

★★

The physical and psychological impact of social isolation comes under the microscope in this solo show about a scientific research project.

Alex – played by writer Noni Townsend – submits to an ethically dubious experiment in which participants are deprived of human contact for four weeks, and observed under laboratory conditions.
It’s a disturbing premise that succeeds in unsettling, by arguing that many people’s hold on sanity is surprisingly fragile and could easily break.

But Townsend’s performance of Alex – beginning on an immediately neurotic and trembling note – doesn’t convey the characters’ journey sufficiently to pull her audience into her spiralling mental state.

Sweet Grassmarket (venue 18), until 30 August, 2:05pm

Published in The Scotsman on 25 August 2015

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