Confessions of a Cultural Spy
This article is from 2006.
This play has a great premise: an American teacher is tasked by President Carter to travel within Europe and report back on anything which may help the USA better understand far-flung nations.
The writer and solo performer delivers a well-structured monologue on his main theme with some detours into Dadaism. These may well be integral to the story but you’ll only get their full significance if you know enough art history. If you don’t (and I’m with you) they unfortunately confuse and break up the narrative.
When Carter fails to win a second term in office the teacher remains in Europe and becomes caught up in a series of coincidences which he feels are leading him to a revelation of some kind.
The last lines of the play are the best, where, finally, the writer gives us an imaginative and vivid illustration of those cultural differences. (Alistair Rutherford)
Sweet, Grassmarket, until 27 Aug 1.10pm