Our Teacher is a Troll (4 stars)

This article is from 2014

Our Teacher is a Troll

Fantastic performances bring Dennis Kelly's book to life at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

There’s some very clever wordplay in Dennis Kelly’s book, Our Teacher is a Troll (as you might expect from the writer of Matilda the Musical) – so it takes some equally clever staging to flip it from page to stage.

Happily, this co-production from Paines Plough and Half Moon theatre companies has that in spades. The direction never takes the easy way out – if there’s something to be said, a new and interesting way has been unearthed to deliver it. And the performers respond accordingly.

Three actors, two male one female, take on a myriad of roles – with many characters being played by all three of them. Performed in the round, with astute use of a single microphone, the show takes us halfway there – then it’s up to our imaginations to fill in the rest.

When the children look up to the sky, at the enormous troll that has come to wreak havoc in their school, it’s almost as if we can see it, slavering over the deputy head. And as each avenue of help is closed to them, from teachers to the Prime Minister, we’re right behind them when it’s left to children to win the day.

Summerhall, 0845 874 3001, until 23 Aug (not 17), 10.30am, £11–£12 (£9–£10).

Our Teacher is a Troll

  • 4 stars

Paines Plough / Half Moon Two terrible twins with a talent for turmoil rule their school with terror and tyranny - until the arrival of a new head teacher with green scaly skin, sharp gnarly fangs and a long spiky tail… Can the twins save the school from the child-eating troll? Can they get brussels sprouts in peanut…