EDINBURGH 2015- BWW Reviews: CELL, Underbelly Cowgate, August 23 2015
CELL begins with Ted telling us through a computerised system about Motor Neurone Disease. Ted is portrayed onstage as a puppet, assisted by three puppeteers. The piece then goes back to Ted before his diagnosis as he works on his stamp collection. He seems content, if a little lonely.
This story is told beautifully through both the puppet version of Ted and shadow puppets that help move the plot along. There is almost no dialogue and the subtle execution of this tale is what makes it so stunning. Ted has a pet goldfish and after the symptoms begin to appear and his diagnosis is confirmed, he takes his goldfish on his final adventure. As Ted occasionally narrates the story he goes through his options after this news and in the end decides to make the most of his movement and "have a bloody good time".
I would be reluctant to use a word like "perfect" in a review but I'm drawing a blank for another way to describe CELL. This piece is well written, funny, touching and technically brilliant.
This is an incredibly captivating piece which is so uniquely brought to the stage. After ten minutes of this play the sniffles in the audience become audible. As his illness takes over Ted's body he is left with the memories of his last trip and the knowledge that he did indeed have a bloody good time. Absolutely magical.
Ticket information for CELL is available on the edfringe website.