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Edinburgh Fringe 2016

The Six-Sided Man

Company Gavin Robertson

Genre: Drama, Physical Theatre, Theatre

Venue: Assembly


Low Down

“There are two rules: Never give the dice an option you’re not prepared to follow, and never disobey the die! Darkly hilarious, seductive… from Luke Rhinehart’s cult novel, The Dice Man.”


The Six-Sided Man is first class theatre and not to be missed! Two excellent actors draw the audience into the world of chance and recklessness in this seventy-minute dramatic play, inspired by a cult novel The Dice Men.

On an all black set, Gavin Robertson & Nick Collett throw dice, in silent unison. They circle, with eyes piercing through each other. Conversations follow, with narrations directly to the audience, taut dialogue and fine physical theatre. It’s all very intriguing and powerful.

Nick Collett plays a psychiatrist; he’s solid, smart and describes examples of his work. Gavin Robertson who unwittingly becomes part of the game of chance himself plays a patient. During his travels one of the characters discovered the Six-Sided Man. It refers to a strategy to let the throw of dice decide on the basic things in life. While this may be an acceptable (and freeing) thing to do for some decisions, what would happen if you chose to make more important decisions in this way? Could you choose some of those decisions and not follow through with others. If so, what are the consequences?

Collett and Robertson take turns interacting in scenes that are either spoken or silent with brilliant physical theatre and masterful monologues. Each actor is very compelling; they are both personable, with resonant voices, well-defined physical acting skills and a dramatic acting range.

Effective flashes of humour throughout the play emerge organically. The psychiatrist draws his patient out by helping him become aware of what he wants and needs out of life. Suspending his disbelief Robertson has expert timing when he reacts emotionally and so realistically as his somewhat naïve character. He is an instinctive actor evidenced by how he fills in quiet reactive moments with a flinch of the mouth or a swift sideways glance. Collett’s character charmingly develops complicity with the audience, which is fascinating.

This story is perfect for Collett and Robertson’s style of performance: creative, and physical with fine acting. Vocal nuances from both actors are outstanding, with comedic and dramatic timing.

Among the several other characters in the play, the radio interview is a highlight, it is clever and Robertson produces an expert smooth talking radio interviewer voice. Collett transitions to explosive raw emotion in a subtle visceral and intelligent performance.

Company Gavin Robertson productions always have a fascinating music score that heightens and complements the mood superbly and this one is no exception. A richly evocative variety of music enhances the experience and storytelling in this enthralling play.

The mantra of the day is ‘never disobey the die’. It’s finely acted, engrossing, intense and entertaining. Don’t miss it!