The Fringe is back and there’s plenty of amazing shows breaking open discussions and perspectives on mental health – whether you ‘re looking for introspective questions, audience interaction, or if you just want a laugh. Expect dark humour, puzzles to solve, and even a jellyfish in an attic.
Save The Male
22-24 Aug, Underbelly
Comedian Jack Rooke and poet Cecilia Knapp founded Save The Male over a kebab and their mutual support for CALM . The comedy, music and poetry showcase has run for four years at festivals across the UK. Each Fringe performance includes different special guests and will run from August 22nd – 24th. Performers include cabaret satirists Bourgeois and Maurice, comedian and activist Josie Long, and absurdist comedian Richard Gadd.
5 out of 10 Men
19-27 August, The Space on Niddry St
Cathartic, intensely gripping, and brimming with dark humour. 5 out of 10 Men addresses the high rate of male suicide through the story of one man coming to terms with the death of his brother. The performers use physical theatre and their own personal experiences to explore the issues behind the statistics. For a revelationary show with more questions than answers, join the cast of 5 out of 10 Men as they explore the relationship between masculinity and mental illness.
19-20, 22, 24-25 Aug, Lauriston Halls
A show for those who cannot sit still, who want answers, who will not stop asking why. The Mindspace is an interactive performance in which the audience drives the narrative. Audience members enter the mind of a patient with mental illness and are challenged to discover how their mind works. Through problem solving and stage exploration, you may either repair psychological damage or make the issues worse. Help the patient find ways to recover and uncover new solutions for mental illness.
This show involves walking but chairs will be provided.
19-28 August, Laughing Horse @ Espionage
Through honest and upbeat storytelling, Dave Chawner challenges the notion that eating disorders are a ‘women’s issue’. From the age of 17, Chawner associated thinness with success. Now he uses comedy as a way of tackling the stigma surrounding men and eating disorders. Having battled anorexia completely alone for seven years, Chawner believes this stigma is what leads men like himself to go undiagnosed and untreated. Chawner’s show Normally Abnormal revolves around his experiences of anorexia, depression, and vegetarianism.
19-29 August, Pleasance Courtyard
Many fathers struggle to explain mental illness to their children, Jellyfish can help. Through the use of theatrics, puppetry and original music, Jellyfish explores mental health in a colourful and educational way for children over the age of 3. The show follows a young boy called Tom who lives with his parents beside the sea. After a tough year Tom and his father discover a jellyfish in the attic – a metaphor for his father’s depression. The duo must figure out why the jellyfish has chosen their attic and how to cope with their new houseguest.
19-25, 27-28 August, Spotlites
A contemporary theatre play written and performed by Lorenzo Novani. Hilarious and harrowing in equal measure Cracked Tiles is real-life inspired, one-man play set in a Glasgow chip shop. It tells the captivating story of a Scots-Italian family’s struggle with madness.
“A year ago he inherited his father’s crumbling empire, a run-down chippy in Glasgow’s East End. The sale of the shop looms but he isn’t ready to leave; Riccardo has just discovered a compelling oddity in the family business records. Perplexed and burning with curiosity, he now finds himself with no choice but to revisit history, asking questions of his father he’d never have dared ask before. Do the shop’s grease-stained walls hold the answers?
The Silence at The Song’s End
19-25, 27-28 August, Greenside @ Nicolson Square
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