Browse reviews

Edinburgh Fringe 2013

The Greatest Liar In All The World

Familia De La Noche

Genre: Physical Theatre

Venue: Underbelly, Cowgate


Low Down

A darkly funny sequel to the story of Pinocchio: the carnival is breathing its last breath and with it so is The Liar. Tired of his lies, he hijacks the performance at gunpoint to tell the real story of his infamous origins. The panicked cast of freaks and misfits do their best to lead the audience on a journey from his conception to the love and loss of the beautiful blue haired girl. Filled with live music, puppetry, physical theatre and clowning, The Liar twists and tweaks reality in this raucous cautionary tale.


Familia De La Noche, bring you an effervescent, twisted adaptation of the well known tale of Pinocchio. They turn the story on its head and give you the tale from their perspective. What happens when you can’t stop lying because you are just too good at it? Or perhaps it’s to save your life? Taking well known excerpts from the classic tale, you recognise characters such as Pinocchio’s father who was hilariously named Jacuzzi. His incompetence is pure comedy, whittling his poor son’s leg into a spoon.

The protagonist meets devilish cat and a fox who never miss a trick. He is swooned by the blue haired moon, falling deeply in love; she fades in and out saving him from himself. They have a party on Booby Island where he discovers the art of lying.

The rest of the cast provide three minions, crawling with mystery and mischief; a clown (Dott Cotton), a beautiful woman (Becca Cox), a dashing jester (Alfie Boyd); the perfect combination for character shape shifting and multirole. On the side we have a musician, doubling up as an actor at times. The music is dark and percussive, perfectly accenting the changes of rhythm in the narrative. The lead, played by Conrad Sharpe was charismatic and fierce. The perfect combination for the greatest liar in all the world. I was particularly impressed by the standard of performance demonstrated by the cast, with control and dynamism they had us totally engaged.

The Shadow puppetry sequence was a charmingly skilful way to show a passing of time, showing another side to the cast’s multi faceted qualities.

There were small reminders throughout that this was merely a play and they were merely players. Bringing the fourth wall down drew us in, we instantly felt more connected. There are so many good things about this show, the puppetry, the design, the acting! I would love to see this show in a bigger, cabaret style venue.

An accomplished, exuberant play of circus wonderment.  I’m very glad to have seen it.