City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Trashed, Underbelly Cowgate, Review

By Kenneth Scott - Posted on 20 August 2017

Trashed - Lab Rats
Show details
Lab Rats
Running time: 
Sacha Moore (writer / director), Ollie Kaderbhai (movement director), Jamie Keene (lighting / sound design).
David William Bryan (Goody).

Goody’s life is rubbish. A one summer job on the bins has lasted for 19 years, during which he has carried a fair weight of garbage. Things have not gone well.

Now he sits amidst a fly-tipping site left by travellers, although he uses a more pejorative term. He is a man of brash, strong opinions, he has a gut feeling for things. Indeed, he also has deeper feelings but as a rather unreconstructed male finds it hard to express them.

He is unconvinced by the mutual benefits of the Compassionate Friends Group in verbalising the grief of child bereavement. The use of “sorry” seems so inadequate and the only thing he has in common with the middle-class others is a dead child. His failure to embrace the therapy has not put him on the best of terms with partner Debs, who is giving him the silent treatment.

Things were so much easier when he was young. He likes a laugh and fell for Debs at a drunken karaoke, drawn by her hiccoughing hamster foghorn hoot. But she isn’t laughing now.

He copes by glugging cans of cider in a relentless flow to diminish his anger at those he judges and in self-recrimination for a life wasted. It seems bad luck cannot be washed away and when he goes on a bender there is every chance that his already complicated life will get trashed.

This is a great piece of visceral, in your face theatre. For all the crisp direction and pinpoint sound and lighting it feels raw and dangerous as Goody prowls the stage.

Part monster, part child forced to grow up too soon, he breaks the fourth wall to pull the audience in, making them participants in his rehabilitation group or drinking buddies in his den.

The levels of misfortune are perhaps a little too extreme even for this tumultuous tale but with a fantastic performance it’s entertaining and thrilling. The antithesis of trash.

Show Times: 3 – 27 August 2017 at 1.40pm.

: £9.50 (£8.50) to £10.50 (£9.50).

Suitability: 16+