Raymondo (4 stars)

This article is from 2015


A thrilling tale of darkness and danger

When the strains of soul music have faded out and the house lamps that litter the stage have been dimmed into darkness, a single lightbulb dangling from the ceiling pierces the gloom, illuminating the bohemian figure of Annie Siddons. In her casual clothes and dégagé hair, she stands at the microphone with arresting presence and begins to share the story of Raymondo, an enchanting piece of magic realist metafiction, dismal and delightful in equal measure.

Written by Siddons herself and directed by Justin Audibert, the show chronicles the exploits of Raymondo and Sparky, a pair of young brothers who are freed by the fortuitous interference of a pigeon from six years of constant confinement in their mother's basement, only to face comparable horrors in the outside world. Featuring a charismatic pair of protagonists and a host of darkly surreal twists, Raymondo is an excellently crafted tale, and Siddons tells it with flair. Slipping from voice to voice with ease, she garnishes the well-paced narrative with an eclectic cast of curious characters.

Siddons is accompanied on stage by Tom Adams, who, armed with an electric guitar, strums and scratches Marcus Hamblett's hypnotic score to haunting effect. The show is a masterful blend of sound and story, and the Kerouacian interplay between the incidental music and Siddons's captivatingly lyrical text is utterly enthralling.

Combining a shiningly original narrative with a bewitching live score, Annie Siddons makes a triumphant Fringe debut. By turns moving and macabre, Raymondo is a remarkable piece of storytelling magic.

ZOO, Aug 24-29, 11:55, £8/10, 0131 662 6892


  • 4 stars

Annie Siddons Raymondo and Sparky have been locked in the cellar underneath their house for six years. An accident involving a pigeon enables their escape. But do they have the requisite skills to survive a haphazard, cruel world? A story of brotherhood, loss, incarceration, survival, desire, and resilience. Siddons…