Edinburgh Fringe 2012
Fabulously funny satire on the absurdity of the global economy – it would be even funnier if it wasn’t so near the truth
Scottish man, Andy, loses his engineering job, becomes an entrepreneur and manages to ruin the entire world economy. A dummy’s introduction to what has happened to the world economy in recent years, this satirical piece rollicks enjoyably along. It’s a slick, well produced piece that’s worth an hour of anyone’s time – and has something of note to say as well as being a laugh a minute..
Billy Mack, as watchable and entertaining as ever, is Andy. He’s the only member of the cast who plays one character for long; the other four cast members jump nimbly from one character to another as the plane goes down and Andy’s life flashes in front of his eyes. Andy starts out as an industrious engineer – “Remember”, his father tells him, “You can’t get better than an engineer”. But in the 21st century, industry and making things is no longer needed, and so, neither is Andy. After unemployment and a couple of false starts, Andy, comes up with increasingly ludicrous schemes to replace people with machines. With banks leaning over backwards to fund him and the world eager for his inventions, Andy strikes a goldmine.
Looking at the nature of work and productivity, and at whether the competition that sets us up against one another can really be good for humanity, Continuous Growth is a playful piece with serious intent. It prods and dissects the workings of the global economy, a system where people no longer matter, and the system serves itself to make ever more and more money for less and less reason – leaving many people stranded and alienated on the turning tide.
Scottish playwright, Catherine Grovensor has adapted Esa Leskinen and Sami Keski–Vähälä’s timely Finnish comedy, Continuous Growth, and peppered it liberally with Scottish dialect and topical references, such as a banker called Freddie Shreddie and an unknown football club with some dubious financial practices (now who could that be?). Billy Mack and his four accompanying actors are on top form to make this a very enjoyable way to learn about global economics.