Phools (2 stars)

This article is from 2017


Charming but extremely loose tale of self discovery, told by a talented troupe of young performers

Babolin Theatre Company return to the Fringe for the 12th time with another cast of young performers and a whole new production for Bedlam Theatre. This year's show is a wacky and energetic tale set in the 1600s that recounts the travails of the young Phools Mortalsby as he travels to London. Although the performers are all new to the Fringe, the director, composer and producer have all cut their teeth with work by Babolin in previous years.

From the moment the audience enter the theatre, the ensemble's energy and enthusiasm is evident – as they sing, dance and clatter their makeshift skiffle instruments. The young 12-strong cast are dressed in era-appropriate clothing and waste little time in charming the crowd. While the narrative ostensibly focuses on one character's journey, each cast member is given an opportunity to demonstrate their performance skills and notable musical ability.

Unfortunately, the exposition-heavy script is delivered slightly too hastily, and the constant repartee between the performers results in some of the story specifics becoming lost; an issue by the time the show unfolds into absurdism. Although slightly too chaotic for its own good at times, the overall warmth and dynamism of the cast, along with their musical prowess, make this a relatively enjoyable afternoon performance.

Bedlam Theatre, until 12 Aug, 12.30pm, £10 (£8).


  • 2 stars

Silliness and songs from Babolin.