The Cairns Lecture theatre in Summerhall is a somewhat unconventional venue for a “great night out”. From the second you enter the venue you are required to participate; whilst waiting in my red padded seat, I was handed a plastic shot cup with WKD in. This was the beginning of the show Eggs Collective Get A Round.
The three performers: Sara Cocker, Lowri Evans, and Léonie Higgins are all dressed identically and channel cheeky hostess personas as they weave in and out of the audience. The performers create a sense of verisimilitude that allows everyone to get on board right away – such as giving out drinks to their audience (don’t worry, they had alcohol training for this). Microphones and booze dangle from the ceiling, counterweighting one another, in order for karaoke, heartfelt ballads, and drunken ignitions of revolution. It’s a shame that the venue makes the setting somewhat awkward and misplaced, because the performance is carried out with complete conviction.
The script is this show’s greatest component, with sincere and touching moments that portray both friendship and regret with a rare tenderness. It reflects upon the culture of alcohol abuse, and the dangers of using it as a form of escapism: life is bad, so you drink, but in doing so only make your situation worse. The message is poignant without being preachy, and somehow simultaneously manages to suggest that binge drinking is both the cure and the poison.
The comedic moments are extremely funny, and the more sobering moments (no pun intended) are immensely moving
The weakest moments of the show are its blank spaces, when prolonged moments of drunkenness force the audience to wait for someone to chime in. That is not to say there is no place for moments of stillness in this show. In fact, in the earlier stages of the show it is rather enjoyable to watch the performers share comical anecdotes from other “great nights out”. The performances are so natural that, when combined with the destruction of the fourth wall, the atmosphere that is created is intimate and organic. This can be effective to a point, but in the middle of the show it started to become mildly repetitive. That being said, the start and end of the show are immensely entertaining and mesmerising for the audience.
The impeccably natural performances and colloquial language makes this show accessible and, for the most part, light-hearted. The comedic moments are extremely funny, and the more sobering moments (no pun intended) are immensely moving. Overall, this is a show that is worth seeing if you don’t mind being required to participate and being touched by performers – be warned!
Eggs Collective Get A Round is showing at the Edinburgh Fringe, tickets can be found here.
Image: Roshana Rubin-Mayhew