The Confessions of Gordon Brown
A well-written one-man show that suffers from a lack of real revelations
This article is from 2013.
Any biographical tale is only as strong as its leading character – and herein lies the rub with The Confessions of Gordon Brown. Despite being one of Scotland’s best, and most divisive, politicians, Brown was one of Britain’s most forgettable prime ministers. While some applauded his stoic refusal to conform to any trite Brand Brown politics, others have long filed his legacy alongside the equally uncharismatic John Major – with current leader of the opposition Red Ed surely destined to follow suit.
Fans of Brown’s hapless charms – with an interest in his rise and fall from power – will doubtless enjoy this well written one-man piece, played with serious panache, by leading man Ian Grieve. The Euro, the Germans, Hague ‘the no-hoper’, focus groups, ‘that f*cker’ Alistair Darling, and of course Tony B, all get a look in, in a show where the emotional range is nicely paced, and the witticisms wonderfully placed.
Arguably though, the show never quite delivers the revelations, the ‘confessions’ its title allude to – ultimately challenged, perhaps, to make only a mildly fascinating man’s life truly engaging.
Pleasance Courtyard, 556 6550, until 26 Aug, 1.45pm, £9.50–£12.50 (£8.50–11.50).