CATHY (Ali Taylor): Edinburgh Fringe 2017

What Fringe Festival? The Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Phindie writer Kathryn Osenlund visited Scotland to see some shows from the home of Fringe.

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Based on Jeremy Sanford’s 1966 BBC TV play, Cathy Come Home, which was directed by socially conscious Ken Loach, CATHY is presented episodic and realistic by Cardboard Citizens. In this desperate drama, Cathy, kicked out of her flat, is fighting an uphill battle with the impossible “affordable housing” and “emergency housing” systems. Right off, things don’t look like they’ll be getting better any time soon. In fact, count on things getting worse. No metaphors or poetic musings here, as drama is dispensed with a heavy touch. That’s not to say that there isn’t sturdy acting all around. Cathy Owen and Hayley Wareham as mother and daughter respectively, and Amy Loughton and Alex Jones in multiple roles, are all skilled actors. Fragmented slice-of-life video projections separate the scenes in this tragic descent down through the circles of bureaucratic hell. After the show the audience is invited to share opinions and seek solutions.

[Pleasance Dome, Bristo Sq, Edinburgh, August 22, 2017 CARDBOARDCITIZENS.ORG.UK, media@edfringe.com]

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About the author

Kathryn Osenlund, theater and film junkie, is a former National Critics Institute fellow, NEA fellow in Arts Journalism, and member of the American Theater Critics Assn Steinberg and Osborn playwriting awards committee. A Barrymore Award nominator and professor emeritus in communications and theater, Kathryn also writes for NY-based CurtainUp.com. On twitter @theatrendorphin.