As you will probably be aware the world’s biggest arts festival starts in Edinburgh this weekend and runs for about three weeks. The city’s population will swell, there will be street performers everywhere, leaflets will be thrust at passers-by by performers eager to entice you to come and see their show and yes, I probably will tut and mutter ‘some of us live here you know’ as I try to get about! It really is a vibrant and exciting time to live in Edinburgh though with the Edinburgh International Festival, the Edinburgh Book Festival and the Edinburgh Festival Fringe all taking place at the same time.
I was lucky enough to be invited to a preview showing of Edinburgh Fringe show The Darling Monologues written by and starring Angela Jackson. This is very much a book related show as it features characters from her award winning first novel, The Emergence of Judy Taylor, and forthcoming novel, The Darlings. It takes place in the top floor of Waterstones at the West End of Princes Street which is just a perfect literary setting.
Angela Jackson brings to the life the three characters of Lily, Ruby and Sadie who are all connected by the unseen Mark Darling. Lily is his aunt, Ruby his teenage sweetheart and Sadie his pregnant wife. Angela gave a very confident performance with no sign of nerves whatsoever and in fact, looked like she was very much enjoying herself. I was very impressed with the sheer amount of words which she had memorised! She took on the personas of Northern housewife Lily, the villain of the piece Ruby and excited mother-to-be Sadie with ease.
I enjoyed the subtle links between the women’s stories as well as their more obvious connections. Their accounts were frank and funny, with lots of warm humour and laughter but there were more poignant moments too. Having met the characters and had a glimpse into their lives, I am very much looking forward to reading the new book when it is published.
The Darling Monologues begins this Thursday 3rd August and runs every evening at 8pm to Friday 11th August. Tickets cost £10 (£8 concessions) and you can buy them from the Fringe Office here or at the various box office venues throughout the city. As it was a preview show, we were asked not to take photos but you can get a sneak peek at each of the characters on the show’s website. Just click on the link below.