Wind in the Willows
Beastly adaptation uses its loaf
This article is from 2009.
You never quite know what you’re going to get from a student production at the Fringe, but this group of actors (and I use the word in the truest sense) from Cambridge University is a cut above the rest. Each character is clearly defined – the irrepressibly mischievous Toad, tea-obsessed Ratty, sensible Badger and adorably put-upon Moley – leaving the audience in no doubt as to their respective agendas. While the anti-social weasels, who’ll stop at nothing to pilfer a tasty ham, are superbly re-imagined as a group of 1930s ladies in cocktail dresses.
As the well-known and equally well-loved storyline canters along, the main action is embellished by a witty mime artist. Strolling across the stage, she represents clouds, sheep, trees and all manner of passing objects. Equally inspired is the use of weaponry, with the final, beautifully-directed battle scene fought with French sticks and a limp white bread sandwich. Add to that the detailed set and costumes, and you’ve got a great hour of entertainment for all ages.
Gilded Balloon Teviot, 622 6552, until 31 Aug, 12.30pm, £7–£8 (£5–£6)