Edinburgh Fringe 2015
Two opposing lawyers help God decide whether or not to flood the Earth for a second time.
Should God press the red button and flood the earth for a second time? This is the basis for Blind Elephant’s Fringe show, Bright Ideas. Two lawyers present the case for and against this problem in a courtroom battle like no other.
The personae of the two figures on stage are instantly obvious, one calm and composed, the other nervously twitching and unable to hide his inner thoughts. It soon becomes clear they are lawyers waiting for a case to begin and in time it begins clear who they are waiting for. When God arrives as a woman in red cowboy boots a tense and brilliantly funny courtroom battle begins.
Ross McCormack provides great comedy in his expressions and movements as the nervous lawyer, in trainers, while his calm, cool, well-dressed opponent provides wit and sarcasm. God is played excellently with a naive, yet worldly authority and a lot of humour. The three interact well on stage and their camaraderie comes through, creating a warmth to the performance. There are moments where direction could have been tighter to ensure each moment is as polished as the one before leaving no room for error or for cracks in the performances to appear however this does not impact greatly upon the overall performance.
There is a lot packed into this entertaining discussion on whether humanity should be wiped out, caught between the cold facts of war, poverty, cruelty, and insanity and the warm truths of intelligence, spirit, and free-will it is easy to see the dilemma. Although it does seem the script leans heavily towards discussing the evils of humans and does not quite balance it out with the good, providing an equal balance would add more weight to the argument and make for even more intelligent debate.
Tragic events referenced within the piece have been well researched and root the debate in a truth that audiences can relate to, this is not quite countered however, providing examples of good in the world that is more on par with the bad would make for a much more compelling argument. The comedy is excellently done and could stand up to more tension and more emotion which would deepen the meaning and messages conveyed with it.
Bright Ideas sparks wonderful debate on current culture and lifestyles and invites everyone to take stock of how they live and how they behave and also to decide whether humanity really is worth saving. With excellent comedy, intelligent content, and a competent cast it seems Blind elephant will have another successful year at the Fringe.