Animal Olympics (3 stars)

This article is from 2008.

Animal Olympics

Astrological antics

Quirky and educational, Animal Olympics explores how Chinese astrology began. Francesca Beard, known for her performance poetry, puts a lot of energy into portraying the 12 animals of the Chinese zodiac as curious individuals. After slipping on her 'magic pants' and becoming her alter ego Mei-Lin, she lays a shiny blue sheet over a table to represent a river.

As legend goes, the first twelve animals that crossed the river would form the Chinese calendar. From a bright red box, Beard pulls out a series of stuffed animals: a rat, an ox, a tiger, a dragon, a sheep, a monkey . . . and a cat! As each animal tells their story, Beard adopts a series of funny voices and bends the toys' limbs into human-like postures. A little slow to start and lacking in humour at times, energetic songs and frequent audience participation still conspire to make this an enjoyable show.

Assembly @ George Street, 623 3030, until 25 Aug (not 11), 11.30am, £9--£10 (£8--£9).

Animal Olympics

  • 3 stars

Quirky and educational story of how Chinese astrology began by performance poet Francesca Beard. 'Part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe'.

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