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Friday, 9 August 2019

EDINBURGH FRINGE REVIEW: A Rock'n'Roll Suicide! at the Zoo Southside

Edinburgh Fringe is full of a wide range of shows and performers of vastly different experience and talents all of them hoping to make that break through into fame and success from their Fringe performances. With 3500 shows it is a competitive world and many will have stories of what might have been. One artist, Lee Mark Jones has put his whole life story on stage in a incredibly raw autobiographical performance at the Zoo venue. He calls it a Rock and Roll suicide and in the course of a powerfully honest 50 minutes we begin to see why.

It is of course a tribute to his music hero, David Bowie, especially in his Ziggy Stardust incarnation and the tone is set when he enters the stage to "There is a star man" although he undermines himself immediately by apologising for the mistakes that will follow. We learn that this Kidderminster lad made his stage debut in a hail of spit and bottles in 1976 as part of the punk era but was deeply hurt by the death of his younger sister shortly afterwards. Tragedy and musical fresh starts seem to be the story of his life. 

EDINBURGH FRINGE REVIEW: Apollo: Take 111 at the Zoo Southside

It seems very appropriate in the 50 anniversary year of the first moon landing when Neil Armstrong said those famous words "one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind" to revisit the conspiracy theories that it never actually happened. This is the premise of this show at the Zoo venue as a cast of five young students imagine that the moon landing was filmed by a hairy film director in the basement of someone's house. 

The show starts bizarrely with a man interviewing people about their moustaches for no obvious reason only to be plucked by a government agency to project manage the filming in his house. The three actors selected to play the astronauts are a method actor who can't remember his lines as Armstrong, a Brit famed for his Hamlet as Collins and a British girl as Aldrin. It does not make any sense and the joke soon wears thin.
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